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Sports Concussions: A parent's guide to signs and symptoms, treatment and prevention
September 26, 2012VYPE DFW Health
VYPE DFW Staff Reporting
A concussion is a brain injury that disrupts normal brain function and is usually caused by a sudden jolt or blow to the head or body. An athlete does not have to be knocked out or have memory loss to have suffered a concussion. In fact, most athletes who suffer a sports-related concussion do not lose consciousness.
• Is confused
• Forgets plays
• Is unsure of game, score or opponent
• Exhibits unsteadiness
• Moves clumsily
• Answers questions slowly
• Loses consciousness
• Can’t recall events either before or after the injury
• Is more sleepy or tired than usual
• Seems sad, nervous, or anxious
• Is irritable, easily frustrated, or upset
• Has problems with school performance
The athlete may complain of:
• Concentration or memory problems
• Balance problems or dizziness
• Double or blurred vision
• Feelings of being “in a fog” or slowed down
• Sensitivity to light or noise
• Any athlete who shows signs or symptoms of a concussion (listed above) should be removed from play immediately.
• The athlete should not be allowed to return to activity until evaluated by a healthcare professional with experience and training in diagnosis and management of concussions.
• Do not leave an athlete alone for several hours after a concussion, and watch for any changes or worsening symptoms.
• A headache that becomes more severe or doesn’t improve with acetaminophen
• Increasing confusion
• Extreme sleepiness or trouble waking up
• Vomiting (more than once)
• Seizures (convulsions – arms and legs jerk uncontrollably)
• Trouble walking or talking.
• Weak or numb arms or legs.
• Any other sudden change in thinking or behavior.
• In the first few days, allow plenty of down time and have the athlete avoid activities such as sports, PE, driving, video games and studying (including schoolwork,
• Doing too much too soon may worsen symptoms and prolong recovery.
Acetaminophen (Tylenol) may be given for headaches, but no other medications should be given without a doctor’s approval.
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