A concussion is a mild traumatic brain injury that affects your brain function. A concussion is caused by a blow to the head or violent shaking of the head and body, and there may or may not be an associated loss of consciousness. Concussions are quite common, with over 3 million reported cases in the US each year. Falls are the most common cause of a concussion, but they are also common in contact sports and car accidents.
Symptoms of a concussion may not show up immediately. In fact, they can sometimes show up as many hours or days later, and they can last for days, weeks, or even longer. Symptoms may include some, or all, of the following: headache, confusion, lack of coordination, memory loss, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, ringing in the ears, sleepiness, irritability, excessive fatigue, sensitivity to light, mild depression, and blurred vision. Most people recover from concussions naturally in 7-10 days; however, the post-concussive syndrome occurs when concussion symptoms are not resolving in a natural time frame following a concussion. If your symptoms are continuing several weeks to months after sustaining a concussion, you are likely experiencing the post-concussive syndrome.
Rest used to be the only common way to treat a concussion. However, the science surrounding concussions has come a long way in recent years. In fact, it is now widely understood that in some cases, prolonged rest can actually worsen concussions. Under the care of a specially-trained physical therapist, specialized treatments, movements, and activities can improve outcomes for patients recovering from concussions. Rest and activity modification will always be important as part of any concussion protocol, but at the right time, and at the correct intensity, graded physical activity is essential to concussion recovery.
Limitless Therapy and Wellness understands that both concussion symptoms and recovery times are unique for each person. Most people usually recover fully after a concussion, but if your symptoms have not resolved, we can help! A concussion assessment begins with an examination of your eye movements, balance, and neck mobility, as well as a thorough interview to inquire if you are experiencing headaches, dizziness, or neck pain. If you are experiencing any of those symptoms, vestibular rehabilitation may be exactly what you need to achieve a full recovery. Vestibular rehabilitation is a specialized treatment approach to evaluate and treat your eye movement, head movement, and balance. We also explore the possible causes of your headaches and other symptoms and may prescribe specific mobility or strengthening exercises. We can then assist you in returning to your normal daily activities and sports in a progressive and safe manner as your symptoms improve.
So here are two important things to remember:
- Concussion symptoms can last for weeks to months after injury. They don’t always resolve with rest alone.
- A specially trained therapist at Limitless Therapy and Wellness can help guide you on the path to recovery by treating the neurological, vestibular, and musculoskeletal impairments caused by concussive injuries.