Concussions are a traumatic brain injury that cause altered brain function. They usually occur due to injury by a blow to the head. This can be seen in sports activities, major car accidents where whiplash is involved and other types of falls. Larger injuries can cause a person to become unconscious as well.
Patients who have experienced a concussion may experience a large range of symptoms. The most common being headaches and mental fogginess. Ringing in the ears, fatigue and blurry vision are other normal symptoms as well. A person who has longer term symptoms may start to notice irritability, change in sleep, concentration issues and sensitivity to light.
To diagnose a concussion, a person may undergo several neurological tests in addition to a CT or MRI to check for bleeding or swelling inside the skull. The most common method of treatment is simply rest over a period to allow healing. This can be accompanied by anti-inflammatories or over the counter medications to help with headaches or pain.
While concussion is considered a brain related injury – upper cervical chiropractic has been helping people who have symptoms of concussion by realigning the upper neck area that has been injured during the trauma of both the head and neck. The tiny bones at the base of the skull can get misaligned during a jarring injury causing unnecessary tension on the brain stem.
Impairment of proper brain stem function can lead to impaired nervous system function, inhibited blood flow to the brain, and reduced cerebrospinal fluid drainage resulting in intercranial pressure. These can lead to those post-concussion symptoms such as migraines, vertigo, brain fog and other difficulties. If the neck is not corrected, it can lead to long term damage.
Jim McMahon, a former NFL star quarterback, suffers from debilitating neck pain, migraines, brain fog, depression, confusion, dementia, vision and speech problems after suffering multiple concussions during his career. After receiving upper cervical care he has noticed improvement in headaches, vision, and speech.
If you know someone who has been suffering after concussion, it’s never too late. I have many patients that find me years after the injury and if the findings show up during an examination, we have symptomatic improvement with care.