Concussion Management at ProActive Rehab
According to The Public Health Agency of Canada, 50% of Canadians have little to no knowledge about concussions and 1 in 4 do not know how to treat a concussion. As with any type of head injury, it is crucial that treatment is taken seriously. Proper care can make the difference between an athlete returning to sport symptom-free or suffering long term consequences that could prevent them from playing contact sports.
Each year, ProActive Rehab provides training on how to prevent concussions, as well as rehabilitation care to those who have sustained them. Our mission is to educate athletes, parents and coaches on the effects of concussions and the treatment options available.
What is a concussion?
A concussion is a brain injury that temporarily changes the way your brain works.
What causes a concussion?
- A jolt, bump, or blow directly to the head
- A body blow that causes your head to jolt back-and-forth
What are the symptoms?
Concussion symptoms can vary dramatically, making them difficult to detect. Some symptoms may include:
- Headache or feeling of pressure in the head
- Dizziness (e.g. "seeing stars")
- Blurred or double vision
- Ringing in the ears
- Slurred speech
- Delayed response to questions
- Appearing dazed or confused
REMEMBER: Very few concussions actually result in loss of consciousness.
How do I treat a concussion?
It is important to seek medical assistance as early as possible so that a doctor can determine if you have sustained a concussion. Your doctor will also provide you with early recommendations for self care.
How does physiotherapy help in concussion rehabilitation?
- Individualized resting strategies and home instruction
- Modification of academic and/or employment demands
- Neurocognitive (ImPACT) testing
- Visual coordination screening and oculomotor-based rehabilitation techniques
- Balance, coordination, and vestibular-based rehabilitation
- Physical exertion testing and exercise plans for return-to-sport plans
- Referral for specialized optometric assessment where warranted
- Physical therapy for associated complaints (neck pain, whiplash etc.)
Rehabilitation is incredibly important after experiencing a concussion.
Book your appointment with one of our qualified therapists using the form on this page. Our therapists are all level 1 trained providers of the SHIFT Concussion Management program and will be completing level 2 training in October 2018.
Is there something I can do now to improve the likelihood of detecting a concussion?
Consider Baseline Testing
Many health professionals recommend that athletes obtain a baseline test at the beginning of each season. This test shows an athlete’s pre-season cognitive and physical function so, in the event of a concussion, the severity of the injury can be assessed with more accuracy. The ability to compare your pre-season functions against your post-injury functions will greatly improve the recovery process and help determine when it is safe to return to sport or work.
Components to ProActive Rehab’s Baseline Testing
(based on the SHIFT Concussion Management program)
At ProActive rehab, we utilize the Shift Concussion Management Program. Shift uses accessible, individualized and effective concussion management strategies for people of all ages.
The components of the Baseline Test are described below:
Neurocognitive Testing (ImPACT)
ImPACT stands for Immediate Post-Concussion Assessment & Cognitive Testing. It is a 30-minute computer based test that measures:
- Attention span
- How quickly you process information
- How quickly you respond to instructions
ImPACT is the most widely used and scientifically validated computerized concussion test available. Shift recommends that the ImPACT test is administered by a trained health professional.
Balance & Postural Stability
An athlete’s physical development and athletic skills are unique and will change over time, making a balance assessment highly recommended with each pre-season test.
Balance and posture stability is often affected following a concussive injury.
Visual Coordination Screening
Symptoms of visual dysfunction after a concussion may include:
- Eye pain
- Focusing issues
- Difficulty reading
A baseline test focused on visual coordination can assist health professionals in identifying pre-existing issues as well as issues that arise after after a concussion occurs. From here, professionals can recommend the right form of therapy.
REMEMBER: This test is not comparable to an optometric exam and does not replace your regular eye exams.
How can I learn more?
Book your appointment with one of our qualified therapists today, using the form on this page.
We are also constantly learning about the human body and how to better support our athletes. To stay up to date on our sport and rehabilitative information, sign up for our newsletter!