BAY Health & Wellbeing

with Rachel Hatcher

CONCUSSION

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

WINTER2015A.RachelSportsTherapypic

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:

Headache

Dizziness

Brief loss of consciousness

Memory loss

Disturbances in vision such as ‘seeing stars’

Confusion

Ringing in ears  

Nausea or vomiting

“Just don’t feel right”

Things to Avoid:

Alcohol

Driving

Prescription or non-prescription drugs without medical supervision

Sleeping tablets, aspirin, anti-inflammatory medication or sedating pain killers

Treatment:

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

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