In the first part we learnt what a concussion was, in this part we will tell you how to treat yourself in the first 24hours to a week and beyond, and how your local Osteopath can help. The first rule of a concussion is: if in any doubt or any unusual symptoms appear head to the emergency room at a hospital or to your local general practitioner as soon as possible. This may involve an ambulance, but you can always call Nurse On Call on 1300 60 60 24 to check, which is available 24/7. Due to the neurological impact of a concussion the first thing to do is to limit sensory inputs such as light, sound and proprioception or reaction time. Take the patient to a dimly lit room, with minimal noise (no TV, or lots of talking) and lay them down with a slightly elevated head.
You have heard the term, know the stories, heard the warnings and seen them occur on the sporting field, but what actually is a concussion? Concussions are defined as a brain injury caused by a blow to the head or a violent shaking of the head and/or body. This does not mean you need to lose consciousness for a concussion to occur. The initial injury itself is to the brain and is due to the brain being pushed against the inside of the skull, some describe it as a bruising of the brain due to the impact. As well as the impact force, different speeds in which the different parts of the brain move can stretch and tear tissue due to the shearing force which can also injure the nerve tissue.