Concussion Symptoms

Concussion symptoms, concussions, headaches, prevent soccer injuries, soccer injuries, most common soccer injuries

Our brains are cushioned from everyday jolts and bumps. A sudden or violent hit to the head or upper body can cause your brain to slide back and forth forcefully against the inner walls of your skull. A hit to the head caused by a car crash or being violently shaken can cause a brain injury such as a concussion.

Concussions are a very common injury to the brain. A concussion happens when the brain is jolted inside the skull because of an external hit to the head or body. A concussion typically will affect how one’s brain will function. The American Brain Foundation estimates that between 1.6 million and 3.8 million people suffer from concussions each year and at least half of which go unreported or undiagnosed. An untreated concussion can lead to more serious long-term health effects that can cause physical difficulties to emotional and mental issues.

Even though concussions can be minor, they are still considered a brain disorder and have the potential to cause lasting or permanent impacts. Some concussions can cause you to lose consciousness, but most do not.

The Most Common Causes of Concussions:

  • Falls
  • Sports injuries
  • Car accidents

A concussion can happen to anyone. However, concussions are more common in young children, athletes, and people aged 65 and older.

High-contact sports such as football, soccer, ice hockey, lacrosse, field hockey, and wrestling are the sports that put athletes at the greatest risk for a concussion. For younger children, concussions can occur when they take a fall on the playground or off a bicycle. Concussions in elderly adults are frequently caused by a fall. Urgent medical attention is typically recommended by healthcare providers after suffering a hit to the head.

Signs and symptoms of a concussion can show up right after the initial hit and others may not appear or be noticed until hours or days after the injury. Concussion symptoms can last anywhere from a few days to weeks, or even longer.

The most common symptoms after experiencing a hit to the head are headaches, loss of memory, and confusion.

Concussion Symptoms:

  • Drowsiness
  • Headache
  • Memory loss
  • Confusion
  • Balance problems
  • Difficulty speaking
  • Delayed response to questions
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Changes in sleep patterns
  • Depression

While concussions are usually not life-threatening, they are still very serious. It is important to watch for any changes in how your loved one is acting and feeling following a hit to the head. You should see a doctor within 1 to 2 days if you or someone you know experiences a head injury. If your child doesn’t have signs of a serious head injury, remains alert, and responds to you, the injury is probably mild, and if he or she would like to nap, it is okay for them to do so. However, if signs develop later, seek emergency care.

An athlete should never return to playing while signs or symptoms of a concussion are still present.

Although concussions cannot always be prevented, there are safety precautions that can help lower the likelihood of suffering from one.

Concussion Prevention:

  • Wear the right protective gear during sports
  • Always play by the rules
  • Practice good sportsmanship
  • Buckle your seatbelt every time you get in a vehicle
  • Know the symptoms of a concussion
  • Strengthen your muscles to improve balance
  • Keep your home safe and clear of anything that can cause you to fall
  • Educate others about concussions

To learn more about concussions click here.

It is important to seek a professional to accurately diagnose a concussion. Any of these symptoms should never go unnoticed or untreated, especially after suffering a fall or being hit to the head.

Physical therapy is a good choice for pain relief caused by a hit to the head and will help patients eliminate some of their pain without medication. Our physical therapist will design an exercise program to boost your stamina and closely monitor your condition and progress at the same time. The course of treatment will depend on the severity of the concussion but typically will include rest and close observation of the individual. They will help relieve neck pain, headaches, and range of motion problems that an individual may experience following a concussion. Most importantly, they will help you regain your strength and endurance. Individuals who experience a concussion should limit their physical activity while recovering.

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