If you suffer from a head injury, no matter how minor it seems at the time, you could experience the symptoms of a concussion, more properly known as a traumatic brain injury.
From the mild to the intense, there are various different signs to look out for and every person will undergo a slightly different combination of concussion side-effects. Here is a rundown of the main symptoms so that you know what to look out for.
Headaches & dizziness
Perhaps the easiest to spot signs of a concussion are headaches that do not respond to store-bought painkillers, or a feeling of nausea which can bring on vomiting in the early stages.
Bear in mind that headaches are also included in post concussion syndrome symptoms, as in some cases the side effects may persist for several weeks or even months.
Headaches and dizziness may arise shortly after the injury itself, but should subside over time. If you continue to experience symptoms for more than 3 months, see a physician.
Another physical issue associated with concussions is to do with your eyesight. You may have blurry vision, double vision, a general fuzziness to your view of the world and even an increased sensitivity to bright lighting.
Again, these effects can be immediate, although they can also come on a little later, which might lead them to be mistaken for signs of some other issue. This is why consulting a medical professional after any kind of traumatic brain injury is sensible, particularly if the symptoms are severe.
This is obviously trickier to define and may not be something you notice yourself, but a concussion can also bring about changes in your mood and your general emotional state. You might become angry more easily than would normally be the case, you may feel sadder than usual without due cause, or you may see your emotions swing more wildly than you would expect.
It is likely that the people around you will be able to alert you to these symptoms in the days immediately after the injury, so be sure to stay aware of how others are responding to your behavior to get clues as to whether a concussion may be the root cause.
Your brain is essential to monitoring and maintaining the many systems of your body, so when it is injured it will often lead to disruptive patterns in other areas. This can include your sleep, and a good sign of a concussion which may come on in the immediate aftermath of the impact.
Struggling to stay awake is a fairly serious signal that something is wrong and medical attention should be sought. You may also find that you are either unable to sleep in your normal patterns, or needing to get more sleep than would typically be the case.
The brain works in mysterious ways and a concussion will often cause complications for sufferers in terms of how they process thoughts.
For example, you may have difficulty thinking with the kind of clarity you are used to, or feel that your concentration levels are a lot lower than normal. You may also find that your memory is negatively affected, and you may not remember events leading up to or immediately after the injury, as well as finding that your short term memory is not as efficient.
Traumatic brain injuries can have serious long term effects and so being able to detect a concussion and get appropriate assistance will put you and your loved ones in a better position.