Head Trauma / Concussion

Though common in children, most head injuries are not severe. It is common after the incident to be sleepy, vomit, and/or have a mild headache. Your child should be able to wake up and behave normally, recognize people and things, and speak clearly. After a head injury a child needs to be observed for a more serious, developing problem. Awaken the child during the first night after the trauma until talking normally.

Call office if:

loss of consciousness

vomiting more than 2 times

less than age 2

difficulty arousing or not acting normally when awakened

headache worsens

trouble seeing or walking, acting clumsy or uncoordinated

unusually sleepy or confused

seizure episode

Concussion is any injury to the brain (caused by a blow or jolt to the head) that disrupts the normal brain function on a temporary or permanent basis. Symptoms may be immediate or delayed by hours or days. The most common symptoms of concussion are: headache, nausea or vomiting, dizziness or balance problems, double or blurry vision, sensitivity to light or noise, feeling dazed, stunned, or confused, trouble concentrating or remembering, slow to answer questions, changes in mood, drowsiness, or sleep problems. Physical and cognitive exertion (homework, video games, or TV) may worsen symptoms. Usually resolution occurs within 7 to 10 days, though weeks or months may be required for full recovery. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends the following:

Children/adolescents who sustain a concussion should be evaluated by a physician and receive medical clearance before resuming sports

After a concussion, all athletes should be restricted from physical activity until no symptoms at rest of with exertion

Neuropsychological testing may provide objective data

There is no evidence proving the safety or efficacy of any medication in the treatment of concussions.

Retirement from contact sports should be considered for an athlete who has sustained multiple concussions, or who had suffered post-concussive symptoms more than 3 months.