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When to worry about concussions

istock 1156923175 1 When an individual has received a sudden blow or shake to the head, they may be diagnosed with a concussion. Most concussions can be watched at home until you can get in to see your physician, while others require more immediate attention. All concussions should be treated by a medical professional with expertise in managing these injuries, such as the sports medicine physicians at Orthopedic Associates of Long Island. 

What are the symptoms of a concussion? 

Some of the more common symptoms seen in patients with a mild to moderate concussion include: 

  • Headaches
  • Nausea 
  • Vomiting
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Confusion
  • Poor memory/concentration
  • Sensitivity to lights and noise
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Irritability/mood changes
  • Personality changes
  • Visual disturbances

When should I seek immediate medical attention for a concussion? 

If an injury is more severe, it may require immediate evaluation in the emergency room. Call 911 or seek emergency medical care if a concussion is noticed alongside: 

  • Loss of consciousness
  • Progressively worsening headache
  • Difficulty walking or talking
  • Loss of vision
  • Repeated vomiting
  • Numbness, tingling or weakness in extremities

These may be signs of a more serious problem that cannot be cared for at home. 

How does a person treat a concussion? 

Concussion treatment is individualized based on a patient’s symptoms.  Patients should avoid sports participation. Continuing to participate in sports following a concussion can lead to extended recovery and have significant long term consequences They should limit physical and mental activities that may require concentration such as: 

  • Using a computer, smartphone, or tablet device
  • Watching television
  • Reading a book
  • Playing video games

Patients should integrate back in their regular routine with the approval of a medical professional. This integration should occur as quickly as symptoms allow. Oftentimes, accommodations for school or work are necessary to allow this transition.  

Are you unsure if your concussion needs medical attention? 

All concussions, no matter how minor they may seem, require medical care. We encourage you to book an appointment with Orthopedic Associates of Long Island to have your injury evaluated. The team at Orthopedic Associates of Long Island can evaluate an individual and make recommendations regarding what should be done to allow the patient to fully heal from their head injury.

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