What You Must Know About Concussions


A concussion is a distressing brain injury that affects the normal functioning of your brain. It occurs due to a blow to your head that can cause your brain to move back and forth, crushing against your brain. Some chemical changes can be triggered due to the impact created by the crushing and can damage your brain cells. Therefore, a concussion should be carefully evaluated and treated by an experienced and qualified medical professional.

In case you are concerned about the condition, Falls Church concussion specialists at Integrated Neurology Services can help you through diagnosis and provide you with the treatment you need.

The Warning Signs of a Concussion

Concussion may not pose a threat immediately, and symptoms may not show up immediately. However, they can last up to several months. Although the common symptoms are amnesia (loss of memory), headache, and confusion, you may experience many other signs, including; ringing in the ears, vomiting, nausea, fatigue, and blurred vision.

Besides, you might not notice some symptoms around the traumatic event, but a witness can observe several other signs, including temporal loss of consciousness, dazed appearance, slurred speech, and forgetfulness.

Causes of Concussion

Concussions can result from a violent blow to the head, neck, or upper body as it can cause your brain to move forcefully in your skull. It can also be caused by sudden acceleration or deceleration, which can be caused by violent shaking.

The injuries caused can alter the brain function for a short period but can cause bleeding in or around your brain, leading to prolonged symptoms such as confusion and drowsiness.

Risk Factors

Several activities and factors can increase the risk of suffering a concussion. They include:

  • Being involved in an accident
  • Falling
  • Participating in high-risk sports without proper safety measures and equipment
  • Being a victim of physical abuse
  • Previous concussion
  • Combat

Potential Complications of Concussions

In case you experience a concussion, you are at a high risk of experiencing the following complications:

  • Second impact syndrome, where you experience a second concussion before the first concussion is treated, can cause fatal brain swelling. However, this condition is rarely experienced.
  • Cumulative effects of multiple brain injuries, although more research is being undertaken to understand the effects of sub-concussive injuries.
  • The post-concussion syndrome includes symptoms such as headaches and dizziness that persist beyond three months.
  • You can also experience headaches related to a concussion for up to seven days or dizziness for several days or weeks.

When to See a Doctor

Although concussions may not pose a threat, seek emergency care if after the traumatic injury you experience the following:

  • Repeated vomiting and nausea
  • A headache that gets worse over time
  • Vision or eye disturbances
  • Weakness in the arms or legs
  • Change in behavior
  • Seizures or convulsions

How You Can Prevent concussions

You can make several efforts to prevent or minimize the risks of a head injury. The following tips can help:

  • Wearing appropriate protective gear during sporting and recreational activities, following the game’s rules, and practicing good sportsmanship.
  • Buckling your seatbelt can prevent severe head injuries.
  • Keeping your home a safe place to prevent tripping and falling
  • Exercising regularly.

If you have had a concussion or know someone who has or you ever witnessed a concussion, the right thing to do is seek medical assistance to evaluate your condition and receive a customized treatment plan. You can learn more about concussions by reaching out to the board-certified neurologist at integrated neurology services.