Football is often the sport we think about when it comes to concussions. But it’s important to know concussions can come with any sport (or activity), whether you’re on the field, court, track or trail.
Concussions can happen when you get a forceful rotation of the head and neck, a direct blow to the head, or both. While we’re in the thick of fall sports season and soon to be headed to the ski slopes, it’s a great time to learn concussion symptoms and what to do about them.
Concussion symptoms can be subtle, so pay attention to things like headaches, dizziness, nausea, irritability and lack of concentration. Symptoms can worsen with exercise or while trying to focus on a task. Remember: The force of the injury does not always match its severity. Some minor concussions can have symptoms that last for weeks, even months, while a high force hit may not cause any injury.
Concussions are serious injuries and can cause permanent issues with repeated trauma to the head. If you think you’ve been concussed, timing is everything. Seek the care of a sports medicine physician right away. Physical and mental rest, including sleep, are critical to aid in recovery. Avoiding high stimulation activities (such as video games) and loud noises (concerts or large events) will also help with symptoms.
To learn more about concussions and treatment, see https://www.amssm.org/FactsheetPDFS/Concussion-2.pdf.