Concussion Treatment

A concussion is the most common type of traumatic brain injury and should be taken very seriously. While concussions can range from mild to severe, any time you suffer from a traumatic brain injury it can lead to physical, cognitive, and even mental damage. The skull of your head helps to protect your brain and there’s a layer of fluid that gives the brain some room to flex and gently move as you go about your day. When you get a concussion, your brain was likely moving around inside your skull in an abnormal way, which can lead to bruising, swelling, and even bleeding in the brain, leaving you in need of concussion treatment as soon as possible.

Causes of a Concussion


Whiplash is a type of neck injury that occurs when your head and neck are violently jolted forward and backward or side to side. While this can obviously do damage to your spine and neck muscles, it can also cause your brain to get shaken up, leading to bruising or swelling on the brain. Generally, the protective layer of fluid inside your skull allows for the brain to move around without making contact with the skull. In a car accident, especially a rear-end collision, the force of the impact can jostle your brain enough that it makes contact with your skull. Whiplash is the most common type of car accident injury, though it can also happen in other high impact situations, like contact sports or a serious fall.

Impact Sports

Impact sports like football, hockey, and boxing are types of activities that can result in a concussion. Whether you collide with another player or fall to the ground and hit your head, these types of movements are high impact and can really jostle your brain. Any time you take a blow to the head while playing a sport, it can lead to a concussion. It doesn’t matter where you get hit on the head if the force is strong enough to cause your brain to shake around and even come into contact with your skull.

Slip and Fall

It is possible to get a concussion if you were to slip on some ice and land hard on your back with your head hitting the ground. Tripping down some steps or falling over to the side can also lead to a concussion if you bump your head or jostle around enough. While less common than whiplash or sports, slip and fall can still bring about a need for concussion treatment, especially in older adults. If you lose your balance or are unable to brace yourself when you fall, you run the risk of getting a head injury.

Blow to the Head

Any other incident where you experience a blow to the head or otherwise bump or knock your head against something can lead to a concussion. If you smacked your head against an open cupboard door and it left a bump, you might not think of it as a true head injury. But if you start to notice other symptoms as the hours and days go on, it might be worth talking to your doctor to make sure there isn’t anything more serious going on.

Symptoms of a Concussion

Concussion symptoms can vary, especially because of how strong the impact was and whether or not you have other injuries. Not everyone will experience the same symptoms after a concussion. Here are some common symptoms you might expect:

  • Headaches and migraines, especially if they gradually get worse
  • Confusion or trouble remembering the accident
  • Dizziness, spinning, or feeling off-balance
  • Drowsiness or fatigue
  • Double vision, blurred vision, or trouble focusing
  • Sensitivity to light and sounds
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Loss of consciousness

Symptoms of a concussion can be physical, cognitive, and even affect your behavior and emotions. That’s because the brain controls all of these actions and the type of symptoms you experience may depend on where the brain was most impacted by the accident. Additionally, some symptoms that may develop later can include irritability, trouble concentrating, and continued sensitivity to light and sound.

Recognizing Concussion Symptoms

It is important to know that concussion symptoms don’t always show up right away. It can take hours and even days to fully experience the severity of your concussion symptoms, especially if you don’t seek concussion treatment right after the accident. Additionally, it can help to have someone who witnessed the accident describe how you seemed to react. Because of memory loss and losing consciousness, you may not be the most reliable source. A friend or family member who was there can help piece together the rest of the experience, like how long you were in and out of consciousness and whether or not you appeared disoriented or had trouble speaking. Other signs more commonly observed by others can include trouble walking or loss of coordination, seizures, enlarged pupils, and any obvious bleeding from the nose or ears.


CT scan

If you are suffering from a concussion, your doctor will likely want to confirm their suspicions with various tests such as the CT scan, which will create a composite image of the brain using different angles of cross-sections.

MRI scan

MRI scans can provide images of the brain using magnetic field technology and radio waves without the use of radiation. They show very detailed visuals of brain injuries like concussions.


Diagnosing a Concussion

A doctor will want to know as much about the accident that caused the concussion as possible. That is why it can be helpful to have a reliable witness who can help explain more about the accident. Additionally, a doctor will want to know what symptoms you noticed right away versus which ones started to appear in the hours or days after the accident. The time in between the accident itself and your first doctor appointment will help your doctor better understand how the concussion and symptoms may have affected you.

Diagnostic imaging tools like a CT scan and an MRI are helpful for getting a clearer, detailed picture of how your brain and surrounding bones, muscles, and tissues were affected. They will also want to review your spine, neck, and back to see if any nearby injuries may be contributing to or making worse any of your presenting symptoms. There are also physical and neurological exams that can help your doctor test your responsiveness and brain activity after a suspected concussion.

AICA Treatment for a Concussion

Treating a concussion depends largely on how serious your symptoms are and whether or not the concussion is severe. In mild to moderate cases of a concussion treatment, surgery or major medical interventions may not be necessary. Instead, your doctor may develop a treatment plan that will help manage your pain symptoms, especially if you are experiencing debilitating headaches or migraines. Once the swelling goes down around the brain you may start to experience relief from many of your symptoms. After you have been diagnosed with a concussion, it is important to follow your treatment plan and talk with your doctor before resuming high impact activities that could exacerbate your injury.

The team at AICA Orthopedics in Snellville wants to help you experience true relief from your concussion symptoms while also allowing your brain and body the time to rest and heal. If you suspect you have a concussion, don’t wait – schedule an appointment with the team of traumatic brain injury specialists at AICA and get started as soon as you can in order to avoid any long term complications and learn how to reduce your risk for concussions in the future.