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Concussions Should Not Be Taken Lightly
Lifespan Concussion Care Center, a Lifespan Physician Group practice, uses a physiatry-based team approach to treat patients of all ages who have experienced concussions.
Concussion, also called mild traumatic brain injury, is a temporary disruption of brain function resulting from a bump, blow, jolt, or blast wave to the head or body. Sudden jarring can cause the brain to bounce or twist inside the skull, damaging the energy centers of nerve cells.
An injured person may have a loss of consciousness — a hallmark of traumatic brain injury — but does not always. In fact, less than 10% of people who have sports-related concussion will have a loss of consciousness. Other symptoms include confusion, disorientation, unsteadiness, dizziness, headache, and visual disturbances.
People who have concussions come from all walks of life. They may be athletes of any age, or have been in a car accident. Workplace injuries may cause concussions. Falls are the most frequent cause of traumatic brain injury-related emergency department visits in the youngest (infant to 4 years) and oldest (65 years and older) age groups. Firefighters, police officers, and service members may experience concussions that affect their job performance
Concussions and Sports
During the last decade, children’s and teens’ ER visits for sports- and recreation-related traumatic brain injuries, including concussions, have increased by 60 percent, according to the national Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Because a young person’s brain continues to develop until the age of 25, concussions during childhood and young adulthood can have serious consequences if not diagnosed and treated early.
Concussions can occur while playing nearly any sport, though they are most common in football, wrestling, ice hockey, basketball, field hockey, and lacrosse. It is important to note that there is no such thing as a concussion-proof helmet.
Treatment and Post-Concussion Syndrome
Each concussion is as unique as the person recovering from it. Factors such as the type of impact, pre-existing conditions such as anxiety, headache, sleep disorders, or learning disabilities all may play a role in the effects of a concussion and in the patient’s recovery. Since concussion recovery is different for everyone, and can be complex, we offer a functional team approach to rehabilitation.