A concussion is considered a type of Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). It is typically caused by a blow, bump, or jolt to a person’s head. In fact, many concussions occur when a person falls or receives a hard blow that causes their head and brain to move rapidly back and forth. Concussions are a fairly common TBI, but, unfortunately, there are many myths surrounding this type of injury.
Understanding 5 Common Myths About Concussions
Debunking the following five myths can help you to better understand concussions.
Myth #1: Concussions are only sustained when you experience a loss of consciousness.
The truth is that loss of consciousness only occurs in a small amount of concussions. The most common signs of a concussion are dizziness, tinnitus, noise or light sensitivity, fatigue, balance issues, headache, and nausea.
Myth #2: A concussion can only occur if you receive a direct blow to the head.
The reality is that a concussion can occur without a direct blow to the head. In layman’s terms, a concussion is caused by force that has been transmitted to the head. For example, extreme cases of whiplash can trigger a concussion. In fact, any sudden movement that causes the brain to move, bounce, or twist within your skull can lead to a traumatic brain injury.
Myth #3: If you receive a concussion, then you need to immediately have a CT scan or MRI.
In many cases, a conventional CT or MRI scan will appear “normal” immediately after a concussion. In severe traumatic brain injuries, the CT scan will be used to identify intracranial clots; however, in the majority of cases, physicians will forgo CT scans and instead conduct a neurological exam. The exam will evaluate your reflexes, memory, balance, concentration, and vision. Depending on the results of your neurological exam, a CT scan might be completed.
Myth #4: Someone with a concussion needs to be woken up every 20 minutes.
The truth is that rest is very important during brain injuries; it helps the brain heal and recover. After a concussion, a person should be woken up every two to three hours to assess how they are looking, acting, and feeling. Once a doctor has cleared a person from the latter evaluation stage, you only need to wake them up periodically.
Myth #5: Injury to the brain can only occur at the exact moment of impact.
A concussion might be considered a “minor” TBI, however, chemical changes can occur hours, days, weeks, and even months after the initial impact. Additionally, the brain is more susceptible to additional injuries after it has suffered from a concussion. In this vein, it is important to seek proper treatment immediately after a concussion so that you can better monitor changes to your symptoms in the days, weeks, and months following your TBI.
Get the Support You Need After a TBI
At TryMunity, we offer a supportive social community that is built to assist anyone who has suffered from a TBI. From concussions to severe brain injuries, our members are ready to share their messages of support, inspiration, and healing with you. To learn how TryMunity can help you in your journey to recovery, we invite you to ask questions, get involved, find solutions, and join our online community.