Concussion Management in Burlington
What is a Concussion?
A concussion, it's a trauma caused to the head due to a fall or an accident of some sort. It is usually a hard hit on the head.
Pillars of Wellness, located in Burlington, Aldershot, specializes in treating concussions and other traumatic brain injuries.
Our clinic focuses on treating concussions that result from head traumas, whether they are mild (not requiring emergency care) or acute (requiring emergency care).
Our team of physiotherapists and occupational therapists can assess your signs and symptoms, review your medical history, and complete a full neurological examination (which includes testing for cognitive function and balance).
We’ll rule out any other injuries as we complete the concussion diagnosis. Note that it’s possible for signs and symptoms to take several days to appear.
Your assessment may require hospitalization overnight for observation after your concussion. During and after treatment, we’ll work with you to gradually re-introduce you to daily activities, without posing a risk to your health.
What are the Signs and Symptoms of a Concussion?
Common symptoms of a traumatic brain injury are headache, loss of memory (amnesia), and confusion.
It may take several hours or days for concussion symptoms to appear. Symptoms can last for days, weeks, or longer.
If you suspect a concussion, avoid any activities that can cause or increase symptoms. These include activities that can increase heart rate or involve forceful muscle contractions (like weightlifting).
If you are experiencing any of the following symptoms, check with your local hospital or family doctor as soon as possible, then feel free to call our Burlington clinic to arrange an appointment as we are specialized in concussion management.
- Headache or a feeling of pressure in the head
- Temporary loss of consciousness
- Confusion or feeling as if in a fog
- Amnesia surrounding the traumatic event
- Dizziness or "seeing stars"
- Ringing in the ears
- Slurred speech
- Delayed response to questions
- Appearing dazed
You might see some concussion symptoms immediately. Others might not appear for hours or days after injury, like:
- Sensitivity to noise and light
- Trouble with memory and concentration
- Sudden irritability and other personality changes
- Psychological adjustment problems and depression
- Sleep disturbances
- Disorders of taste and smell
While it’s common for children to experience head trauma, it can often be difficult to recognize in infants and toddlers. Watch for these symptoms in your child, especially after any head trauma:
- Appearing dazed
- Listlessness and tiring easily
- Irritability and crankiness
- Loss of balance and unsteady walking
- Crying excessively
- Change in eating or sleeping patterns
- Lack of interest in favorite toys
How can we help you recover from a concussion?
Here are some exams that our practitioners may perform on you, depending on the time and magnitude of your traumatic brain injury and the severity of your symptoms. This involves the testing of cognitive functions not as a means of curing the brain trauma, but rather as a means to determine or characterize cognitive functions:
- Processing time
In relation to an acceptable baseline for a normal individual, involving the use of various types of testing such as Paced Auditory Serial Attention Test, Trail Making and Digit Symbol Substitution. Which are used to measure:
- Slowed reaction times and increased variability in response
- Reduced attention and ability to process information
- Impaired memory and learning
- Reduced planning and ability to switch mental set
At Pillars of Wellness, the prominent and most significant advice our practitioners will give to you is REST---as this is the bedrock of all concussion management and recovery.
We advise and insist that all our patients rest from any strenuous physical and mental activities following the occurrence of a traumatic brain injury. This is especially true for athletes engaged in contact sports, or sports with massive potential for a head injury.
The reason behind this constant warning is that there is a likelihood of you developing what we call a second-impact syndrome (SIS) which in most cases can lead to prolonged symptoms, delayed recovery and in most cases permanent brain damage.
Serious care should be taken in cases that involve teenagers or kids because at this stage the brain isn't fully developed yet and that is why concussion recovery in younger individuals takes more time than it does with adults.
When in the resting phase, it is advised that you stay away from watching television, or using your cellular phones, reading, texting and in some cases---depending on the severity of your concussion---our practitioners will recommend that you completely avoid school and any form of school work, pending the time all symptoms have completely subsided.
Here at Pillars of Wellness, our practitioners work closely with you in gradually re-introducing you back to your work or physical activities with close monitoring and evaluation until you are completely fit to carry on with your daily activities without any health risk.
One area most other clinics and hospitals don't pay much attention to is the area of pain relief medications. Now it is understandable that during the recovery phase, you might have to go through a varying amount of headaches and in some cases, migraines.
Which is why we take extreme care in prescribing pain relief medications that not only helps in alleviating the pain but also ones that don't negate the efficacy of your recovery or worse still precipitate a neural breakdown---(this is particularly true when you are already on a different medication).
How to Prepare for your Concussion Management Appointment?
It’s always important to see a doctor in case of a jolt to your head, whether it’s a mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) or more acute brain injury. Call to schedule an appointment if you’re in doubt about your head trauma.
Here are a few pointers to help you prepare for your appointment:
- Avoid physical or mental activities that can worsen your head injury
- Avoid any sports or activities that can put a strain on your heart. These prevent us from getting an accurate prognosis
- Make a concise list of all symptoms observed. See above for a full list
- Bring a record of your medical history, whether or not items are related to the concussion
- Bring a list of your current medications, whether they are taken pre- or post-injury
- The diagnostic experience can be overwhelming. Don’t hesitate to attend your appointment with someone you trust
Why Choose Pillars of Wellness?
At Pillars of Wellness, in Burlington, Ontario, we are proud to provide a truly integrated care approach that employs a variety of treatments to achieve a faster recovery. Our clinic offers different services such as chiropractic, naturopathy, counselling, speech therapy, occupational therapy, yoga therapy, acupuncture, holistic nutrition, and physiotherapy.
With multiple diverse services and specialties in one place, you’ll get the best care possible — without having to look elsewhere. Pillars of Wellness is your one-stop-health solution, located right here in Burlington.