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  • Writer's pictureKelsy Rayl

5 Signs You Might Have a Concussion: What to Look Out For

Did you know that a concussion is a mild traumatic brain injury? It can happen if you get hit on the head, fall, have a sports accident, car crash, bicycle mishap, or even an injury at work. When your head or body gets bumped hard, your brain can move inside your skull causing an injury. This can lead to problems like bruising, bleeding, swelling, damage to blood vessels and nerves, and even cause long-term issues with how your brain works.


Often, people don't even realize when they have a concussion. They don't get treated because they don't know when to see a doctor after getting injured. If you don't get help for a concussion, it can cause problems that stick around. Studies say that even one concussion can make your chances of getting dementia go up by 72%. (1)


Brain disorder symbol presented by human head made form paper.

Spotting the 5 Signs of a Concussion

There are several signs and symptoms of a concussion that you can experience following an accident. Sometimes, these signs might not show up until days or weeks after you get hurt. It’s important to be on the lookout for the symptoms below. If you notice any of these things, take charge and make an appointment!


  • Headache: A headache is one of the most common things that can happen after a concussion. Your head might feel like it’s aching, throbbing, pounding, or full of pressure.

  • Dizziness: Feeling like you're spinning around, being unsteady, or seeing things blurry or double.

  • Feeling Mixed Up: Feeling confused, like you don't know where you are, feeling foggy, or just not quite right.

  • Memory Loss: Not being able to remember things that happened before or after getting hurt.

  • Tiredness: Feeling slow, sleepy, or lethargic.


Some symptoms are a sign of a more serious brain injury, and you need to see a doctor right away if you have them. If you’re throwing up repeatedly, your headache is getting progressively worse, you feel weak, super confused, talk funny, can't coordinate well or walk right, have seizures, or pass out, get medical help right away!


Delayed Signs and Symptoms

Sometimes, after a concussion, symptoms show up right away. Other times, they might take hours or days to show up. It's normal to have symptoms while you're getting better. But if you're not feeling better after 7-10 days, or your symptoms get worse, you need to see a concussion specialist. Here are some symptoms you might have:


  • Headaches

  • Feeling dizzy

  • Not liking bright light or loud noise

  • Having a hard time paying attention

  • Getting easily irritated or having mood changes

  • Having trouble sleeping

  • Feeling really tired


So you’ve had a concussion, now what? Check out our blog on how to deal with your concussion. 


Please note that the thoughts and ideas presented in this article reflect the author's viewpoint, unless stated otherwise. This content should not be considered as individual medical guidance. The details shared are designed to assist readers in making well-informed choices regarding their own health and well-being.


Resources

1:  Morissette MP, Prior HJ, Tate RB, et al. Associations between concussion and risk of diagnosis of psychological and neurological disorders: a retrospective population-based cohort study. Fam Med Com Health. Published online July 27, 2020. doi:10.1136/fmch-2020-000390


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