As more and more research continues to identify the long-term negative effects of repeated head injuries, it’s important for everyone to be identify the warning signs of a concussion, particularly when it comes to student athletes.
A concussion, known as a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) in the medical profession, is defined as a trauma-induced alteration in mental status that may or may not involve loss of consciousness. Concussions can be caused by a variety of injuries such as falls, a blow to the head, whiplash, forceful shaking or a rapid rotation of the head and neck. While there are numerous symptoms of a concussion, only one or two need to be present for someone to be diagnosed with this condition.
Since every injury is different, it’s important to understand that, although treatments are similar, each person will require their own specific management protocol based on their symptoms. Testing for a concussion is complex and involves numerous steps. A complete diagnosis consists of questioning of symptoms, testing of cognitive function, balance, reaction times, motor coordination and memory retention. The symptoms can subside quickly or may take weeks or even months to resolve.