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Brain injuries and sleep quality linked, study suggests

Louisiana patients who have suffered a traumatic brain injury may be interested to learn that, according to a study, there is a strong link between a person's recovery and their sleep patterns. It was suggested that, if hospitals could take steps to help patients restore normal sleep cycles, patients may recover more quickly.

The study involved 30 patients who had suffered moderate to severe traumatic brain injuries after becoming involved in motorcycle accidents or similar traumatic accidents. Researchers found that both brain function following the injury and sleep quality improved together. For example, patients who had lower levels of consciousness following the injury would only sleep for a couple of minutes before being awake for a couple of minutes. This cycle would continue throughout a 24-hour period. As the brain recovered, the person's sleep cycle improved.

Ultimately, the findings of the study are consistent with other research that shows that sleeping allows the body to restore its brain functions. In fact, sleep disorders have also been associated with cognitive changes in patients who have been diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease. There are several ways that hospitals could assist with improving patients' sleep styles, including drugs as well as ensuring that patients are exposed to sunlight or an equivalent during the day and dark at night.

While traumatic brain injuries are frequently associated with football and other physical contact sports, motor vehicle accidents are a leading cause. When it can be demonstrated that the negligence of another motorist was the cause of the crash and thus the injury, an attorney could assist a victim in seeking compensation for lost wages, medical bills and other damages through a personal injury lawsuit naming the at-fault driver as a defendant.

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