Proper management of concussions starts with recognition followed by immediate and decisive action. Studies show that those who understand the severity of concussions are more likely to report them. Dr. Charles Tatar, a neurologist from the University of Toronto stated that: “There is evidence that education about concussion leads to a reduction in the incidence of concussion and improved outcomes from concussion”.
Protocols dictate that the student should avoid any visual or cognitive stimulation for the 48 hours following a concussion to allow his/her brain to heal. Post concussive symptoms can vary in intensity and duration. Depending on the symptoms, students may sometimes return to school with certain accommodations. Social interaction in a school environment can play a positive role in the resolution of emotional symptoms.
Having a plan: Existing emergency protocols should be amended to include procedures to follow in the event of a suspected concussion. Schools may also want to create a preseason contract outlining the athlete’s, coach’s and parent’s roles in concussion management. Everyone should be aware of the ABCs of concussion safety: Assess the situation, Be aware of the signs and symptoms, Contact a health professional. Helping a child recover from a concussion requires support and understanding from everyone in the child’s life. The NEUROCIRCUIT team will make recommendations based on results of the child’s post concussion assessments and will work closely with the child’s family and teachers throughout the road to his/her recovery. The ultimate goal is a quick and safe return to school and play.
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