Children love engaging in sports, riding bikes, and playing on the playground, but unfortunately sometimes children sustain a concussion as a result of these activities.
According to the CDC, Center for Disease Control, a concussion is a brain injury that significantly alters the way the brain normally functions. A concussion can occur after a bump, blow, or jolt to the head. Most concussions occur without loss of consciousness.
If your child sustains a head injury, be alert for symptoms of a concussion. Symptoms of a concussion may not be present immediately but may occur hours or days after the injury occurred.
Some signs observed by Parents:
- Appears dazed or confused
- Is confused about events
- Answers questions slowly
- Shows personality changes
- Forgets class assignments
Symptoms that may be reported by Child:
- Difficulty concentrating
- Nausea or vomiting
- Blurry or double vision
- Grades drop in school Sleeping more or less than usual
- Does not “ feel right”
If your child has one or more of these signs or symptoms of a concussion, seek medical attention immediately. Concussions can have a more serious effect on a young developing brain and need to be addressed. The health care provider can evaluate how serious the concussion is and recommend the best management that will help your child achieve the quickest recovery both physically and academically.
The concussed brain has to work longer and harder to complete simple tasks and tires very easily. Make sure that when your child is recovering from a concussion, rest breaks are taken, and your child avoids physical activity, texting, watching television, playing video games and using the computer.
If your child has headaches as a result of the concussion, discuss headache management with the health care provider. Also completing a headache diary is very helpful. A headache diary should include when the headache occurred, the duration of the headache and what activities may have attributed to the headache such as lack of sleep, using the computer or physical activity. Bring the headache diary to the health care provider when your child has the follow- up concussion appointment.
Your child’s school principal and nurse should be notified that your child has suffered a concussion. Your child should not participate in physical education class, sports or recess until a health care provider experienced in evaluating for concussion says it’s okay to return to these activities.
Ninety percent of students with concussions reported that symptoms worsened once they returned to school. Cognitive activities such as concentration and learning also need to be managed and monitored by a health care provider. The health care provider will work with the school to develop educational strategies to ensure the most comfortable environment for your child’s learning and the most effective recovery from the concussion.
Have a happy and safe spring!