RICHLAND, Washington- Concussions are common; even more if you practice a contact sport. Student-athletes and their families need to know the symptoms of concussions and what to do if they suspect one.
Symptoms of a concussion
The dazed look
Scared of heights
Unable to remember events directly before and after the injury
Confusion, slow motion
Bothered by light/noise
According to the CDC, the concussed person may complain of ringing in the ears, a headache, or pressure in the head. Symptoms may appear immediately or be delayed, appearing days later.
Treating a concussion
If you suspect a concussion, go to the emergency room immediately.
After someone hits his head, he must not fall asleep. Even if you are tired, stay awake.
Treating a concussion is different today than it was in the past, according to sports medicine physician Dr. William West. Previously, it was common to treat a concussion with prolonged brain rest and minimal stimulation. Now, that’s similar to recovering any other muscle; strength is rebuilt.
“Over time we’ve learned that it’s the opposite of helpful, it actually delays healing,” Dr. West said. “Now we want them to be active, we have a step-by-step program to help them get back to learning and their sport in a grated way that helps the brain recover, basically like physical therapy.”
It is important for student-athletes to know that they should tell their coach or another adult if they have been hit in the head or think they may have a concussion. Although the treatment is different, It’s still very important to stay away from vigorous activities, such as playing sports, while symptoms of a concussion are present, according to the Mayo Clinic.
West said many of his patients come for head injuries from football, soccer and hockey.