When In Doubt, Sit Them Out
Parents it’s that time of year again when your young athlete is starting their fall sports. As a parent your first fear is that they are going to get hurt. Concussions have become a major concern from the grade school athlete to the pros. The diagnosis can often go undiagnosed, but the cumulative effects can be detrimental.
What Is A Concussion
Concussion is a brain injury that occurs when the brain is shaken inside the skull, causing changes in the brain’s chemistry and energy supply. A concussion might happen as a result of a direct blow to the head or an indirect force, such as whiplash. You might or might not lose consciousness.
- Difficulty with balance
- Difficulty with sleeping
- Double or blurred vision
- Sensitivity to light and sound
How Is A Concussion Diagnosed
A concussion is diagnosed through multiple tests that include cognitive, visual, balance and a comprehensive neurological testing.
What To Do If Athlete Fails Exam
Withholding from play is highly recommended and the determination for return to play should be made by a medical professional and NOT THE COACH.
After A Concussion, what should the athlete do.
Rule #1 is REST!
Avoid strenuous activity, excessive visual stimulation and avoid loud noises until cleared by your physician. The brain won’t have time to heal if you increase physical exertion too soon, such as returning to social activities, sports or if you increase cognitive demands too soon, such as returning to school or work. You can slowly resume normal activities only once your symptoms have improved and stay improved.
6 Step Program For Return To Play
- ONE STEP PER DAY!
- No activity. Once symptom free proceed to level 2.
- Light exercise (walking, stationary bike)
- Sport specific exercise (drills, ball handling)
- Non-contact training drills
- Full contact training after medical clearance
- Game play
This information does not substitute for professional medical advice, but is a guideline for assessing athletes following a head trauma. Always seek the care of a physician with any questions about your medical condition.
How Can Physical Therapy Help
Physical therapists can evaluate and treat many problems related to concussion. Because no two concussions are the same, the physical therapist’s examination is essential to assess your individual symptoms and limitations. The physical therapist then designs a treatment program. The treatment plan will manage and treat dizziness, poor balance and headaches. If you have any questions contact Paramount Rehabilitation Services at 989-891-9800