Concussions: What your Brain Needs

Concussion: What Your Brain Needs

By: Marlee Moore, Exercise Therapist

Concussion is a mild traumatic brain injury induced by biomechanical forces, which can be caused by a direct blow to the head, face, neck or indirectly on another body area with an impulsive force transmitted to the head. Rest in the early phase of injury, especially in the first 24-48 hours, plays a critical role in recovery. Evidence suggests however that getting physical activity early (after 1-2 initial days of rest) may facilitate a quicker recovery.  This can be as simple as a daily walk and, as a general rule, should not further aggravate symptoms. 

Concussions also require cognitive rest in the early stages (1-10 days, depending on severity of symptoms). Tasks requiring attention, concentration and visual effort require considerable energy to accomplish. Engaging in these tasks prematurely may cause symptoms to worsen and prolong recovery, which is why modifications to school or work routines may be required.  Current recommendations suggest 

eliminating the following after experiencing a concussion: TV, Video Games, Texting, Reading, Computer work. The goal is to limit cognitive activity to a level that is tolerable and does not worsen or result in re-emergence of symptoms. 

You may be asking yourself, what can I do or what activities are safe while recovering from concussion? In general, activities that do not require significant visual demand are often tolerated reasonably well after concussion.  Audio activities such as podcasts, audio books, listening to music or the radio; going for a walk and gentle household chores are often well tolerated. It is important to keep yourself engaged in some level of activity while recovering from a concussion. 

Concussions, like any other physical injury, should be properly managed and rehabilitated; especially when symptoms persist beyond the first few days. If you or someone you know suspects, or has been diagnosed with, a concussion please call ProActive Rehab at 705-788-1480 to book a Concussion Assessment. Our rehab team is a Level 2 Shift Concussion provider and is well trained in concussion management. We are eager to get you back to living without concussion symptoms and to return to doing what you love!

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