Concussion

Concussion

Concussion can be defined as a form of brain injury either by direct or indirect blow to the head, face, neck or elsewhere in the body resulting in an impulsive force transmitted to the head. The biomechanical forces typically result in rapid onset neurological impairments that are usually short-lived.

Concussion can have longer lasting effects that can go on for months, even years and this is known as post concussion syndrome.

Common challenges:

  • Headache

  • Dizziness

  • Disorientation

  • Light sensitivity

  • Memory loss

  • Slowed movement

  • Reduced cognitive ability or concentration

  • Clumsiness

  • Poor sleep

  • Irritability

The role of a neurological physiotherapist in concussion management:

Neurological physiotherapists are physiotherapists with additional training and expertise in treating problems related to the brain, spinal cord, inner ear and nerves. Neurological physiotherapists apply their neuroscience knowledge to assess multiple aspects of brain function at a very detailed level. This accurate clinical picture will form the basis of an evidence-based strategy to treat an individual’s specific symptoms.

There is increasing evidence that complete rest following a concussion delays recovery times and often does not restore the highest levels of function. What is required is graded exposure to a range of stimuli and to build on the exercise tolerance. Treatment of eye movement and depth perception are also important in restoring balance and hand eye coordination. The neck will also need to be examined together with the vestibular systems to ensure that the sense of verticality and orientation are well tuned post concussion.

What our skilled therapists can offer:

  • Thoroughly assess the individual’s neurological systems, in particular the neck, vestibular and autonomic systems and the interplay of these in balance and orientation

  • Understand the cognitive and emotional difficulties that an individual after concussion may have

  • Design a personalised neurological rehabilitation program that is holistic, graded and considers the 24-hour routine

  • Provide hands-on treatment to teach the individual how to move better or more efficiently

  • Teach strategies to cope with challenging environments

  • Liaise with the other health professionals, such as neurologists or psychologists as required to assist in your rehabilitation or health and well-being

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