A concussion is defined as a brain injury that is a complex pathophysiological process affecting the brain, induced by biomechanical forces. A concussion may be caused by either a direct blow to head, face, neck or elsewhere on the body with ‘an impulsive’ force transmitted to the head. All concussions are a mild traumatic brain injury, but not all mild traumatic brain injuries’ are a concussion.
Concussions can often show no abnormalities on standard structural neuroimaging as clinical symptoms are usually reflected as functional disturbances as opposed to structural. After a trauma to the brain, simple tasks can become very difficult and patients may experience any of the following symptoms
- Brain fog/cognitive decline
- Dizziness or vertigo
- Anxiety, depression, changes in personality
- Behavioral changes such as irritability/anger/mood swings
- Cognitive impairment such as slowed reaction time
- Sleep disturbances
- Vision changes such as light sensitivity, difficulty with screens, blurred vision
- Noise sensitivity
- Problems in busy environments
- Decreased stamina- cognitive, visual, physical
- Difficulty initiating tasks
- Difficulty following conversation with several people
A concussion can have severe neuropathological changes to the brain, which is why having an early diagnosis and proper treatment is essential for management. Treatment for a concussion can vary for every individual, but effective concussion management will put an emphasis on planning and pacing, vision rehabilitation, vestibular training, gait, balance and cardiovascular training along with education on return to work or return to activity.
Your first visit to Neuromotion Physiotherapy following a brain injury will consist of a 60-minute assessment to determine severity of symptoms and establish an individualized treatment plan that will be effective for you.