Whether you’re experiencing your first concussion or you’re an athlete whose sport puts you at higher risk for head injury, the protocol for recovering from a concussion is very important. Not only do you want to see a doctor right away after a head injury, but it’s also essential to follow the steps laid out by your trusted professional to ensure complete and total healing. There are a couple of different schools of thought when it comes to concussion recovery, but the foundation of healing a brain injury remains consistent. At McWhorter CNR, we specialize in helping patients, especially athletes prone to chronic concussions, restore brain function through innovative treatment protocols. Let’s discuss what you should do after a concussion and some of the best things you can do for healing.
What Is A Concussion?
A concussion is a specific class of brain injury that comes as the result of the brain hitting the skull. This can happen in one of two ways - directly through a hit to the head or indirectly through excessive force or motion, such as whiplash. Concussions can range in severity, progressively becoming worse when the patient has suffered a concussion before.
The symptoms of a concussion can also range, but typically include:
- Memory loss
- Trouble concentrating
- Light or sound sensitivity
- Blurred or double vision
- Nausea or vomiting
- Poor balance
- Irritability or mood changes
Loss of consciousness can also be a symptom associated with concussions, but it’s one of the more rare presentations of the injury. A delay of symptoms is also not uncommon, which is why it’s so important to speak with a medical professional as soon as the injury happens to confirm a diagnosis of concussion.
Steps For Concussion Recovery
In most cases, concussion recovery takes anywhere from 7 to 10 days. Upon getting diagnosed with a concussion, you’ll be given recommendations to follow. Adhering to these recommendations is essential to achieving recovery. Not following them, however, can lead to a prolonged healing process. Here’s a few of the best practices for concussion recovery from the experts:
Reduce Any Activity That Strains The Eyes
From books to television to computer screens, there are a lot of things we do in any given day that puts strain on our eyes. This can significantly worsen concussion symptoms and is important to avoid, especially in the early days of concussion recovery.
Limit Physical Activity
It’s important to reduce your movements, especially those that will jostle your head and neck when you’re suffering from a concussion. Reducing these types of motions will help give your brain the opportunity to recover.
Maintain A Healthy Diet
Staying hydrated and maintaining a nutrient-rich diet is also key in the concussion recovery process. Some studies suggest that dehydration can actually increase your risk of getting a concussion in the first place, so keeping hydrated after a concussion is doubly important. A protein-heavy diet that’s also filled with omega-3s has also been shown to aid in the recovery process after a concussion.
Get Plenty Of Rest
This is hands down the most important element of concussion recovery. You have to let your mind and body rest to successfully heal from this type of injury. Slowly add activity back into your regular routine and listen to your body when you may be overdoing it.
Consult A Specialist
A medical doctor can diagnose a concussion and provide recommendations for the recovery process, but that’s not always enough for complete healing. Consulting a specialist who works with concussion patients on a regular basis can be a highly beneficial move. Concussion recovery experts, like Dr. McWhorter, can offer more innovative therapies, including neurofeedback, DynaVision, and hyperbaric oxygen therapy. These can all aid in the healing process and help you restore brain function faster and more completely.
Your Partner For Concussion Recovery In Denver
Recovering from a concussion can be hard work. It’s important to work with the right healthcare professionals to ensure you can regain your health and heal from a brain injury like a concussion. Dr. Jeff McWhorter is a leading expert for concussion recovery in Denver, with many years of experience treating athletes and other patients with brain injuries.
If you’ve suffered a concussion recently, schedule an appointment for concussion recovery at McWhorter CNR today.