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5 Myths About Concussions

Diagnoses can be scary. Athletic Trainers are here to help.

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With the fall season upon us and football in full swing, the hot topic of concussions will be back in the news. The following are some common myths and misconceptions that can happen when you receive a concussion. But here's to hoping you don't!

1. You Need a CT Scan


Nope. There is no need for a CT Scan or any scan for that matter. Concussions can be diagnosed with a little history of how you got the injury, your symptoms, a balance test, and sometimes a cognitive test.

2. Concussions only Happen When you Pass Out


Concussions can happen at any time and to anyone. If you take a hit to your head and have a lingering headache you probably have a concussion. This being said, concussions are not as serious as Traumatic Brain Injuries. Both injuries involve your head and cause cognitive impairment, but Traumatic Brain Injuries can have serious long term effects whereas concussions will resolve themselves with rest.

3. You Must Be Woken Up Every Hour On The Hour


This is actually only recommended if you experienced a loss of consciousness or your symptoms have gotten way worse before bed. Otherwise you should sleep just like you normally do.

4. Painkillers are Necessary


In reality, some concussions will make you feel like you need to be medicated in order to have some relief from your headache. But overdosing on pain relievers is a no-no because it can hide some important symptoms that show there could be a larger problem at hand, such as a brain bleed. If you are going to take medication only take acetaminophen and only after speaking with your doctor.

5. I Can Still Text...


When you are diagnosed with a concussions it is recommended that you let your brain rest. Many people think that just means no schoolwork. It also means you should not be doing anything that would strain your eyes. This includes watching TV, texting, being on a computer, and yes doing schoolwork.

If you believe you have sustained a concussion always speak with your doctor and never self-diagnosis. And if you believe you have sustained one on the playing field find your athletic trainer!

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