Most people recover from concussions, however, some people will have a delayed recovery. Our certified clinicians will work with you and your physicians to help you improve your function and return to normal activities.
“A concussion is a type of traumatic brain injury (TBI) caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head. Concussions can also occur from a fall or a blow to the body that causes the head and brain to move quickly back and forth. Doctors may describe a concussion as a “mild” brain injury because concussions are usually not life-threatening. Even so, their effects can be serious (https://www.cdc.gov).”
An estimated 3.8 million sports- and recreation-related concussions occur in the United States each year and as many as 50% go unreported (Harmon et al 2018).
According to the CDC, signs and symptoms of concussions include:
Difficulty thinking clearly
Nausea or vomiting
Sensitivity to light or sound
Sleeping more than normal
What will treatment look like?
Treatment will involve evidence-based interventions, conducted one-on-one with a certified clinician, and will include, as appropriate:
Treatment of Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (re-positioning of the otoconia (inner ear “crystals”) in the canals).
Aerobic exercise – Studies have shown efficacy in treatment of symptoms (including cognitive deficits) with properly dosed aerobic activity (Leddy et al, 2013). Your therapist will use a specialized protocol to establish a safe exercise program to help speed recovery and return to activity Leddy et al, 2016).
Individualized home programs similar to clinician-directed program that is safe for the patient to complete independently.
Frequent reassessment and adjustment of treatment plan as needed.
Sports concussions are unique and often require multi-disciplinary approach to care. While the first head injury can prove problematic, subsequent injuries are even more likely to cause long-term problems. To preserve our young athletes’ brain health, performance and potential for success, it is critical that coaches, players and parents are aware of the potential dangers of sports concussions and the importance of proper diagnosis, treatment and medical clearance to return athletes safely to play.
At Kitsap Physical Therapy, we have therapists who are certified and trained in evidence-based protocols for concussion management.
Martha Devereaux PT, DPT, C/NDT, CI (Bainbridge Island)