RACHEL IS A SPORTS THERAPIST AND LEAD COACH AT SWANSEA WATER POLO CLUB. RACHEL IS OWNER OF THE HUB, A SPORTS THERAPY CLINIC IN THE PHOENIX CENTRE, TOWNHILL. THIS MONTH RACHEL WRITES ON THE SUBJECT OF CONCUSSION
Concussion is the most common head injury, especially in contact sports such as Rugby. It can be caused by a direct blow to the head but can also occur when blows to other parts of the body result in rapid movement of the head (e.g. whiplash type injuries).
This blow to the head can result in a trauma to the brain interfering with brain function, loss of consciousness occurs in less than 10% of concussions. All concussion should be treated as serious.
The severity varies but it is important to monitor for 72 hours after a knock to the head.
Reduce the risk of concussion by wearing suitable head protection such as a head guard.
Signs and symptoms:
Brief loss of consciousness
Disturbances in vision such as ‘seeing stars’
Ringing in ears
Nausea or vomiting
“Just don’t feel right”
Things to Avoid:
Prescription or non-prescription drugs without medical supervision
Sleeping tablets, aspirin, anti-inflammatory medication or sedating pain killers
Rest (physically and mentally) until symptoms have gone
Most concussions do not require any treatment
You must be cleared either by a medical professional before returning to sport