Concussion & Traumatic Brain Injuries
What is a Concussion?
A concussion is an injury to the brain caused by a blow to the head or a violent shaking of the head and body. All concussions are traumatic brain injuries with varying levels of severity.
Professional and adolescent athletes are especially vulnerable to concussions, particularly those who play contact sports, such as football, boxing, soccer, hockey and others, but anyone could suffer a head injury.
Acute Concussion Symptoms
If you or someone you know has suffered from a head injury, it’s important to look out for the signs and symptoms of a concussion. These symptoms can range from behavioral or emotional changes to cognitive or sensory impairment.
- Blurred Vision
- Focus Issues
- Mood Changes
- Memory Loss
- Ringing in the Ears
- Sensitivity to Light and Noise
How Long Does a Concussion Last?
Concussion symptoms can last a few days, a few weeks, and even several years or not fully resolve. Several contributing factors concussion recovery include:
- How you were injured
- Severity of the concussion
- When you sought treatment
- Type of treatment received
- Number of previous concussions or TBI’s
- Additional medical conditions
Based on the above, a concussion or symptoms can last anywhere from a few days to a few weeks, with more severe cases reported to have symptoms last for a year or more.
Long Term Effects of Concussions
If concussion symptoms last more than three months, this condition is called post-concussion syndrome (PCS).
Symptoms of PCS include, but are not limited to:
- Headaches or migraines
- Personality changes
- Sleep troubles
- Memory issues
- Sensitivity to light and/or sound
- Difficulty focusing
- Light-headed or dizziness
- Mood swings
Even more, there are a variety of long-term effects that can be impacting people a year or more after an injury, with the most common symptoms being a combination of physical, psychosocial and cognitive. In these people, reports of headaches, dizziness, light & noise sensitivity, depression, anxiety and coping issues tend to occur most often.
When a person suffers from PCS, it can have a significantly negative impact on their quality of life. In these cases, seeking out medical treatment is highly suggested.
There are currently no FDA-approved drugs to treat or reverse PCS. There are, however, several medications used to mask the symptoms including anti-depressants, sleep aids, narcotics, and anti-anxiety medications. All of these medications are either addictive or can actually lead to a higher risk of suicide. As a result, avoiding such treatment options and finding a safer, more effective and natural way to address PCS is crucial.
Traumatic Brain Injury Facts & Statistics
- Falls are the most common cause of TBI, closely followed by being struck or hit by an object, and motor vehicle accidents
- Traumatic brain injuries are severely underreported
- TBI is common among athletes, with most reports coming from football, soccer or hockey players
- Between 2014 and 2015, female soccer players were the most likely to get a concussion
- In 2013 alone, there were about 2.5 million emergency room visits, 282,000 hospitalizations, and 56,000 deaths related to traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) in the United States. This adds up to approximately 2.8 million instances.
- TBI is the “signature injury” for those in the military
Concussion & TBI Recovery
When recovering from a concussion or traumatic brain injury, it’s important to be evaluated by a qualified physician. Keeping calm, getting a lot of rest and easing into your normal routine are also important but there are other things you can do that can help you speed up the healing process and reduce your symptoms.
One type of concussion treatment is hyperbaric oxygen therapy, or HBOT.
At HMS, we want to share our enthusiasm and knowledge for this extraordinary technology that has the ability to help individuals in their healing and recovery process, creating life-changing results.
Call our office today at (516) 762-8840 or click the button to Get Started with Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy and learn how it can help you accelerate healing and achieve optimal health!