It’s the time of year to get active! That means baseball tryouts, taking off the training wheels, and maybe even dusting off those old in-line skates. Well, don’t forget about helmets, too. Being more active means more chances for getting hurt, and we especially have to remember to keep our heads safe.
Any fall or blow that causes your head and neck to move back and forth quickly could lead to a concussion. A concussion is typically a “mild” type of traumatic brain injury, and should be taken seriously.
Signs and symptoms – The symptoms vary from person to person, and sometimes take days or weeks to set in. They can include: headache, nausea/vomiting, difficultly concentrating or thinking clearly, sensitivity to light/noise, a tired feeling, memory loss, changes in mood, sleep disturbances and blurry vision.
What to do – If you think you have a concussion, see a doctor. He or she can look for warning signs of a more serious condition, and may recommend a CT scan.
How to feel better – Doctors recommend lots of rest and sleep, avoiding physically demanding activities, and just all around “taking it easy.” You should also limit activities that require mental focus like balancing a checkbook; it strains your mind. Since your ability to react could be slower, your doctor might tell you not to drive for a few days.
Prevention – Taking steps early is the best way to prevent a concussion. Wear a helmet, avoid dangerous activities, and know when it’s time to get help.