What is a concussion?
A concussion is a brain injury that occurs when the brain is shaken violently within the skull. This can happen when you have direct trauma (ie: fall and hit your head on the ground) or indirect trauma (ie: whiplash).
Every concussion is considered serious, and you should seek medical help immediately if you experience a head injury.
Symptoms from a concussion are varied and will depend on which part of the brain is injured. Symptoms can affect your physical, emotional, and mental well-being and may appear immediately or be delayed. Symptoms can include headaches, dizziness, fatigue, vomiting, blurred vision, slurred speech, a decreased ability to think or process thoughts, difficulty concentrating, anxiety, depression, irritability, and more. Symptoms can last for minutes to months, depending on the severity of the injury.
What does a physical therapist do to treat concussions?
Physical therapists and often athletic trainers work with physicians to assess whether a concussion is present to treat the symptoms with a safe and individualized plan. Assessments may include tests to identify problems such as loss of muscle strength, coordination, balance, changes in sight, smell, hearing, and memory. A physical therapist will also assess your neck and the surrounding area, as these parts of the body are often injured at the same time the concussion occurs.
How do you treat athletes with concussions?
For concussion management in athletic populations, Performance uses the medically accepted "Return-To-Play Protocol" giving patients a clear set of steps and guidelines to follow so they can effectively and safely recover from their concussion and decrease their chances of future concussions.
How do I know if I need physical therapy for a concussion or suspected concussion?