Concussions can happen at home, at work, at school, on the field – really anywhere. A concussion is a complex pathological process that affects the brain after a blow to the head or body. When a concussion occurs, there is a rapid onset of changes in your neurologic function, and your brain cells begin to communicate in a disorderly manner. Early evaluation and diagnosis are important so treatment and a path to recovery can begin.
Concussions can be caused by motor vehicle collisions, sports or recreational activities, falls or assaults. While this injury is commonly thought of as being caused by a direct hit to the head a concussion isn’t limited to contact to the head. A person can be struck in the body causing the head to move rapidly back and forth or rotate, and a concussion can result. It is important to note that while some people lose consciousness, most people with a concussion do not lose consciousness.
According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), there are approximately 1-3 million concussions caused by sports and recreational activity in the United States annually. A concussion is considered a traumatic brain injury. When someone gets concussed, there is impairment of neurologic function. This will result in a variety of signs and symptoms.
Common concussion symptoms
- Difficulty remembering or paying attention
- Balance problems or dizziness
- Feeling sluggish, hazy, foggy or groggy
- Feeling irritable, more emotional or down
- Nausea or vomiting
- Sensitivity to light or noise
- Double or blurry vision
- Slowed reaction time
- Sleep problems
- Loss of consciousness
A concussion prevents the brain from working normally and disrupts normal daily activities. The symptoms it causes can affect you for days, or even months, after the initial injury. Concussions can have a severe impact on a patient and cause prolonged and sometimes debilitating symptoms. That is why concussion treatment is important.
You should not return to work, school, sports or recreational activities until you are evaluated by a licensed health care provider who has been trained in the clinical management of concussion. Our concussion specialists will help develop the right concussion rehabilitation plan for you.