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How To Identify if Your Child Has a Concussion

Updated: Jan 16

When your child plays a contact sport, concussions are a common injury they can sustain. The situation can become scary as a parent, especially when you don’t know about the signs and symptoms. Learn how to identify if your child has a concussion so you can provide them with the care they need.

What Is a Concussion?

A concussion is a brain injury that occurs when someone takes a blow to the head. Loss of consciousness does not always occur, but it can occur if the impact to the head is hard enough.

What Are the Signs of a Concussion?

There are a few different common symptoms of a concussion. The following do not require immediate medical attention. To note, an athlete does not require the need of a doctor unless they show severe signs and symptoms.

These symptoms include:

  1. Dizziness

  2. Fatigue

  3. Headaches

  4. Irritability

  5. Difficulty with memory and paying attention

  6. Sensitivity to noise or light

  7. Slow response time

The following is a list of severe symptoms:

  1. Convulsions or seizures

  2. Loss of consciousness

  3. Vomiting

  4. Slurred speech

  5. Inability to recognize things and people

  6. One pupil is larger than the other

  7. Extreme behavioral changes

  8. Inability to be woken or severe drowsiness

If your child shows any of these signs, go to a medical care facility immediately. Come prepared and know what questions to ask at urgent care. It varies by state, but some professionals and schools may require the athlete to complete testing before returning to the sport.

What Should You Do if Your Child Has a Concussion?

If your child has a concussion, they must rest both mentally and physically from sports and strenuous activity for at least a day or two. If your child fails to rest and receives another concussion before the first one can heal, symptoms will multiply, worsen, and become severe. Wearing a helmet does not necessarily prevent a concussion, but they do aid in preventing severe brain injuries; ensure your child is always wearing their proper gear for the sport.

Identifying if your child has a concussion is vital for contact sports. Injuries in any sport are inevitable, but it is best to be prepared first for a serious injury such as a concussion. If you are unsure whether your child needs urgent care, speak with the coach and athletic trainer to get more opinions on how to better care for your child.

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