Concussions can happen at any point, and these traumatic brain injuries can lead to long-lasting effects. Concussions often result from a sudden jolt or blow to the head and cause the brain to shake inside the skull. This heavy impact can impact brain function temporarily, but these injuries can often leave behind long-term effects that impact memory, personality changes and can increase the risk of brain disorders later on in life. We’re here to help you by looking at the effects of concussions, how to seek help, and what to pay attention to with concussions to receive treatments.
Post-Concussion Symptoms and Their Effects
Any whiplash, accident, or bump to the head can cause a concussion, and while concussions most often happen to athletes and construction workers, anyone can get a concussion, as concussions most often occur during minor car accidents, accidental falls, or experiences of whiplash. According to the CDC, about three million people experience a concussion each year in the United States, and about 150 people die from traumatic brain injuries each day. If you’ve experienced any hard blow to the head, it’s essential to seek medical attention right away to remove the possibility of a concussion.
For many people, head injuries can be hard to notice, mainly as their symptoms most often occur hours to days after the experience. The after-effects of a concussion can ultimately result in long-term problems, and these risks increase if they’re ignored. If you’ve suffered a head injury, these are some of the initial symptoms you should look out for to determine if you should seek medical help:
- Persistent, severe headaches that worsen over time
- Unsteadiness and loss of balance
- Blurry vision
- Drowsiness and difficulty staying awake
- Weakness or numbness throughout the arms or legs
- Confusion and irritability
- Slurred speech
- Blood/clear liquid from the ears and nose
When concussions develop long-term effects, it’s referred to as post-concussion syndrome. Post-concussion syndrome often starts as early as three weeks, causing concerning medical issues that require the help of mental health professionals and other specialists. Even mild concussions can develop this condition, and depending on the severity of the concussion, some individuals can face symptoms for months to years, leading to permanent disability. In these cases, it’s essential to pay attention to any unusual symptoms that occur from post-concussion syndrome, including:
- Memory Loss/Amnesia
- Personality Changes
- Progressive Brain Disorders
- Sleep Disturbances
- Loss of Taste/Smell
For any head injury, it’s essential to see your physician as soon as possible to help deter any long-term side effects. Visiting an urgent care practice can help remove those worries by performing diagnostic tests and after-care instructions for caring for your injury to help prevent these long-term effects from occurring. If you are unsure of how severe your head injury is, then the best place to go to receive treatment is through your local urgent care facility.