In general, more people are familiar with the word “concussion” than they are with “traumatic brain injury.” Little did they know, a concussion is a mild form of traumatic brain injury (TBI). A concussion is a type of traumatic brain injury caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head that can change the way your brain normally works.  A concussion can also be caused by a fall or blow to the body that causes the head and brain to move quickly back and forth, such as a car accident.

Thankfully, most people who receive concussions recover quickly and fully; however, there are some individuals who experience symptoms for days, weeks, months or longer. There are four categories that symptoms usually follow when it comes to concussions: thinking/remembering, physical, emotional/mood, and sleep. Common symptoms include:

  • difficulty thinking clearly,
  • headaches,
  • unusual sleeping patterns,
  • noise and light sensitivity,
  • feeling lethargic,
  • dizziness and more.

As an adult, there are several danger signs you should look for after a head trauma, they include:

  • a headache that only worsens,
  • slurred speech,
  • repeated vomiting or nausea,
  • inability to recognize people or places.

The same danger signs exist for children followed by inability to stop crying and not eating or nursing.

There are tips on how to better prevent concussions and TBIs. They include buckling in your child and yourself when operating a motor vehicle, never driving under the influence, wearing a helmet, making sure your child’s play area is made of shock-absorbing material, using non-slip materials on the floor and bathrooms, and using improved lighting throughout the home.

What is most important to remember about any head trauma is to take it seriously. If you are involved in an incident that results in a head trauma such as a bump or jolt, consult a doctor and get checked out.

www.cdc.gov/concussion

SVL