Whole lotta shakin’ going on – Concussion

During concussion the brain is shaken around inside the skull.
The importance of rest
I regret that after my second major concussion I only took a week off work because possibly by having adequate rest my memory would have recovered better. I think that you need to take a month off work after a concussion or just wait until you feel ready.
One of the themes of this website is emphasising the importance of proper rest after an injury, whether an overuse injury or an acute injury.  I think that the evidence is stacking up now that if you have a concussion it is important to rest, and I think that the body and mind take a lot longer to heal than we like to think, so simply taking a week off is probably not enough.

Clumsiness

One of the problems that some people experience is an increased clumsiness.  I think this is actually probably a short term memory issue – e.g. seeing something but forgetting about it a minute later and then bumping into it or dropping it. One way around this is to periodically refocus your attention on your environment away from your internal thought processes.  You can do this by making a conscious effort to simply look around for a half a minute and notice what is in your environment.  This can also be a way to deal with feelings of anxiety. This simple exercise can create a heightened level of awareness of your environment which can assist your memory in registering what is around you whilst also refocusing attention away from internal worries to your surroundings.

Apart from rest is there anything else you can do after a concussion to prevent damage? There is some evidence that fasting can help, however I am not sure about this because the reports seem to be based on animal studies and there is some conflicting evidence. Also, nutrition after injury is important so denying yourself any nutrition may not be helpful, but I don’t know.

Concussion and mental health

Concussion can cause anxiety problems and I still do not know whether the anxiety I experience is because of head injury or other factors.

How to improve your brain function

I am not sure whether this applies to concussion, but if you want to improve your brain function the evidence is that brain training games may not provide the benefits to brain health they claim to, according to experts.

Instead, a report from the Global Council on Brain Health recommends that people engage in stimulating activities such as learning a musical instrument, designing a quilt or gardening. The younger you start these activities the better for your brain function.

The council – which is a collaboration of international scientists, health professionals and policy experts – has produced a report on the best ways to stimulate the brain and reduce cognitive decline.

The report recommends seeking out new activities that challenge the way you think and are socially engaging, while leading a healthy lifestyle.

Examples include undertaking everyday activities such as cooking and gardening or learning a new skill such as photography or IT or undertaking artistic pursuits such as creative writing or drawing, ideally in a context where you are interacting with other people.

  • These are some good links about concussion:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pGFq0jDr3Tw

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ouhzJwZC2b8