Your Child Suffered A Concussion Playing Sports - What Should You Do?

The beginning of another school year has necessitated multiple changes in the daily routines of parents and their children, as families are now evolving from the various activities that were prevalent during the summer months toward becoming familiarized with a new schedule of events and commitments that will occur. For many children and adolescents, this will include participation in sports.

It has been stated that approximately 3.8 million concussions occur in the U.S. each year during competitive sports and recreational activities, and nearly 70% of all sports-related concussion issues that result in emergency visits involve children and adolescents.

Concussions are also the most frequent form of traumatic brain injuries. which are also referred to as TBIs. These can be caused by a blow to the head, a bump, or any impact on your body that forces the head to jolt quickly. When any of these quick movements occur, it can cause the brain to twist, while also initiating changes in the brain that can include damage of cells.

Both genders are impacted by concussions, and when they occur in children or teenagers, the highest number of these incidents take place in football, rugby, hockey, soccer, and basketball. Concussions are most likely to occur with males who are involved in football, basketball, and biking, while females who participate in biking, and horseback riding experience the highest number of TBIs.

The majority of concussions will interfere with how the brain normally functions on a short-term basis. While that is certainly not a situation that any parent wants their son or daughter to experience, concussions are usually mild and a complete recovery normally occurs. However, it will require time for the injury to fully heal.

It will be important for children and teenagers to avoid physical and strenuous mental activities for several days following a concussion. Then the return to normal activities should only be gradual and based upon the status of any remaining symptoms.

Symptoms of a Concussion

As a parent, there are a number of symptoms that you might observe if your son or daughter is dealing with a concussion. These include his or her inability to remember what happened before or after the impact occurred. There could also be confusion, difficulty with memory, inability to maintain focus, and the potential for awkward movements.

If your child or teenager tells you that they are contending with a headache or the feeling of having pressure inside his or her head, that is an indication that they are experiencing a concussion. This is also the case if nausea or vomiting is mentioned, along with double vision, blurry vision, abnormal sensitivity to light and noise, confusion, and sleeping problems. You also may notice a change in normal behavior or your child.

When To Visit A Doctor  

If you believe that your child or teenager has experienced a concussion, you should absolutely seek immediate medical assistance. It is likely that the physician will conduct a neurological exam in order to observe the vision, hearing, balance, and coordination of your son or daughter, then also perform tests to check for any memory or concentration issues. Brain imaging might eventually occur in situations where the symptoms of a concussion are more severe.

Steps Toward A Return Following Concussion

According to the U.S. Centers For Disease Control And Prevention, (CDC), there are six steps involved with the process in determining whether it is safe for a young athlete to begin playing sports again after experiencing a concussion. This six-step process is gradual, which will require a level of patience from both the child and parents.

First, your son or daughter will return to school. Any physical activity at this point should remain light (such as short walks) or moderate (such as a stationary bike) in order to reduce the risk that the symptoms of a concussion will increase. Step 2 involves a light aerobic activity that will be designed to increase your son or daughters heart rate. This involves 5 to 10 minutes on an exercise bike or walking.

In Step 3, the activity can increase to a moderate level which can include some head movement along with the activities of jogging, a stationary bike, and some weightlifting. Step 4 elevates into a heavier activity that still does not involve contact. This can include sprinting, running, stationary biking with greater intensity, regular weightlifting, and non-contact drills that are specific to your son or daughter’s sport.

Step 5 enables the young athlete to make his or her return to practice and participate in full contact during that process. Finally, Step 6 is the highly anticipated full return to competition.

At Rapid Med Urgent Care Center We Are Here To Help

It is important to visit a doctor if your child has experienced a blow to the head that has created concern, or if he or she is behaving abnormally. Emergency medical care is also recommended if you observe any of the symptoms that were listed previously.

If your child has experienced a concussion, or if you think that he or she may be dealing with the effects of a concussion, the professionals at Rapid Med Urgent Care Center have a proven track of commitment in the management and prevention of head injuries for the student-athletes inside our community.

We believe that athletics are important to the development and health of our children, and our specialists remain dedicated to making your child or teenagers’ participation in sports a safer endeavor. Our staff also receives continued education and training in order to stay up-to-date on the most effective treatments.

Rapid Med’s Therapies For a Rapid Recovery 

  • BCTT Exercise Therapy
  • Cognitive Therapy
  • Oculomotor Rehabilitation
  • Vestibular Therapy

Rapid Med’s Preventative Strategies And Performance Enhancement

  • Balance Training
  • Field of Vision & Fast Eye Movement Enhancement
  • Neck Power Enhancement
  • Screening for Potential Genetic Concussion Susceptibility
  • VOR Enhancement

Rapid Med’s Steps To Concussion Management

  • Prevention Strategy And Baseline Testing
  • Sideline Evaluation And Intervention
  • Clinic Evaluation And Management
  • Return To Learn Protocol And Therapeutic Intervention
  • Return To Play Protocol
  • Risk Assessment For The Appropriate Level Of Play

In addition to the Concussion Management and Prevention services that we provide, the staff of professionals at Rapid Med Urgent Care Center are also here to assist you with numerous Primary Care needs, Occupational Medicine for employers, and also with the management of your medicine and immunizations before you travel outside the country.

You are also encouraged you to contact us by using our Rapid Med On Demand service. We will deliver the same great service that you have will receive at either of our locations but with the convenience of simply using your phone, tablet, or computer.

Phil Clark
Phil’s experience as a writer enabled him to generate advertising and marketing material throughout his career in the television industry before he expanded his level of knowledge by creating various promotional elements for all forms of media in other industries. He has also produced articles that have been published in numerous publications and websites, including usatoday.com, and USA Today’s football magazine, where he wrote weekly columns and player profiles for multiple years. He has also worked with Photoshop, Illustrator, and Vizio, and has a BS in Broadcasting from Indiana State University.
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