Concussion Symptoms: Signs Of Concussion In Kids, Adults, And Elders
Our brain is the most vital part of our body. It is protected by our skull and the protective fluid that surrounds it. If your head faces a direct blow then you may start showing symptoms of concussion.
But, don’t worry because it is common and not a serious type of brain injury. Though serious cases can also arise in the event of unforeseen occurrences.
Concussions may not be life-threatening, but you must know what are the symptoms of concussion. Why? Because these symptoms can hinder your daily activities and it may turn out to become a serious problem.
In this article, we are going to share the symptoms of concussion in children, adults, and the elderly. We will also speak about how you can prevent them and when should you consult a doctor.
Symptoms Of Concussion In Children And Babies
Children are more susceptible to concussion because of their super active lifestyle and hence chances of a blow on the head are high. They usually will not be able to explain what they are feeling. So, as an adult/guardian you should look for the following symptoms in them:
- Unable to walk in a straight line
- Changes in their behavior at school or while playing
- They get tired or bored easily
- Change in their eating or sleeping pattern
- Memory problems and slurred speech
- Delayed answers to a question
- Sudden loss of consciousness
- Drainage from their mouth, ears, or nose
Symptoms Of Concussion In Adults
Adults who are more engaged in athletic activities like cycling, football, and other sports are more susceptible to concussions. As an adult, you can recognize symptoms of concussions by yourself. The symptoms are subtle and can last for a few weeks or longer.
- Ringing in ears
- Loss of balance and coordination
- Blurry vision
- Feeling sleepy
- Headache that lasts long
- Vomiting and seizures
Symptoms Of Concussion In The Elderly
If you’re among the elderly population then beware as concussions can be caused by everything from hitting your head on the cabinet door or from an innocent headbutt by your grandchild. The symptoms are generally ignored by elderly people because they feel that it is a part of the aging process. The following are the symptoms:
- Sensitivity to loud noises or bright lights
- Brain fog
- Anxiety depression and sleep problems
- Frequent body pain
For an elderly person, the symptoms may last much longer, compared to a 20-year-old.
How To Know If It’s A Concussion?
First of all, if your symptoms do not last longer than 1 day then you do not need to visit a doctor. But if they persist for longer, you can become unconscious. Also, a concussion may be accompanied by a back or neck pain problem. Thus, visiting a doctor becomes a no-brainer.
The doctor will usually check for any wounds on your head and ask you simple questions like what is your job? Where do you stay? What is the season right now? These questions are to check if your brain is functioning properly.
The doctor may even ask you to do a CT scan or an MRI scan to rule out any internal injuries within your brain. They will also check your reflexes because it is controlled by the Central Nervous System (CNS), the brain’s powerhouse.
You may need surgery only if there is bleeding or swelling in the brain. All other treatments can be done with simple medications.
If everything is fine, then you will be advised to take it easy and will be prescribed some basic medications to help you get back to normal.
Are There Any Post-concussion Symptoms?
The symptoms will occur within the first week of the impact on the head and will go away within a month or two at the most. But sometimes, the symptoms may continue after that period also. This depends on the impact of the injury.
There is no solid research regarding why some people develop post-concussion symptoms while others do not. Mostly it may be because the symptoms like headache, anxiety, insomnia, etc, are also present in people suffering from depression or stress, both being common mental health problems in this generation.
Also, some people may have not recovered from the blow on the head psychologically and hence it may develop some post-concussion symptoms.
Elderly people and females may face post-concussion symptoms more easily because of the age factor and also because they generally seek out medical help even at the slightest of symptoms.
How To Prevent A Concussion?
1. Take Some Rest
The best way to heal is to take some rest from all the athletic activities that you might be doing. Take care while going around in your everyday life. You do not want a repeat concussion that can have severe problems like internal brain swelling, long-term organ complications, brain damage, etc.
You do not want the damage done to be increased even more. It can cause physical drawbacks to the brain’s structure and hence can be fatal. So, let your return to normal life be gradual.
2. Wear Protective Gear
This is a must when it comes to sporting activities, but we always tend to take it for granted. While cycling to the grocery store or biking to the mall, we do not wear helmets as it is too close to our house. You never know when your mind may get distracted for a second and an accident could happen.
3. Don’t Get Into Physical Fights
This may sound obvious, but it is important. When in a fight, people generally lose their wits and take uncontrollable actions. One blow can lead to falling down unconscious, followed by a series of additional brain problems.
A blow to the head can cause a concussion. The symptoms are mild but should not be ignored if they last longer. Usually, you will heal with proper rest but it is good to consult a doctor to be sure that no serious brain damage has happened.
If you think you or your loved ones have experienced a concussion, then talk to your general physician. Although this may not lead to a serious problem, as you know prevention is better than cure and hence it is better to be safe.
September 15, 2020 Sam Bell