What to Expect if my Child is Concussed

My child has a concussion... NOW WHAT?

It is impossible to explain exactly what will happen because no two concussions are exactly the same. Generally speaking, here are some things a parent might expect.

The first objective is to remove the child from harms way. After an initial concussion causing any signs or symptoms, any subsequent trauma, however minor, can cause a significant increase in problems and prolonged recovery.

The second objective is to watch closely for signs and symptoms that would warrant immediate transport to a trauma center. While extremely rare, a head injury resulting in a skull fracture or internal bleeding causing seizures, loss of consciousness, repeated vomiting, worsening of symptoms over time, inability to walk or talk, inability to recognize people, etc would necessitate activation of the Emergency Medical Services.

In MOST cases of sports related concussion, the most important action to take is to protect the athlete from further harm and allow the brain to rest both physically and mentally (cognitively).

In the hours following a concussion, rest may help many of the initial symptoms to subside, only to re-emerge when engaging in more activity. The activity may be physical (walking, jumping, running) and/or cognitive (concentrating, reading, watching TV, computer work) and/or visual (riding in a car, sensitivity to light or noise, "busy environments" such as malls, school hallways, school cafeteria, etc.)

It is best to limit any environment or activity that causes any symptom to re-emerge or worsen. This may mean avoiding TV, computer work, reading, homework, driving around with friends, going shopping, etc.

Follow up with an appropriate licensed health care provider experienced in concussion management and following the management protocols established will provide the best outcome for a speedy recovery.

Youth Sports Concussion
JLA Consulting , LLC
Copyright 2013