A concussion is a mild traumatic brain injury that occurs from accidents or physical trauma to the head, neck, chest, jaw or other parts of the body. Accidents can arise from falling, getting hit, fighting, and lots more.
Disorientation or loss of consciousness usually accompanies a concussion, followed by a brief period of forgetfulness. When you have a concussion, the first and most common symptom to occur is headache, along with other conditions such as nausea, fatigue, and lightheadedness.
This condition can cause complications without proper assessment and treatment. The body needs rest for a gradual healing process, although this also includes constantly checking for signs of deterioration and bleeding.
Can You Sleep With A Concussion?
Many people fear letting a person with concussion fall asleep. Worrying the condition could worsen if the person allowed to sleep. However, this is not always the case.
When you sustain injury to the head or brain that results in concussion, you are prone to develop bleeding in the brain depending on how serious the blow or trauma was.
Bleeding can go unnoticed and lead to death or life-threatening situations, especially if it is not closely monitored.
When a concussion happens, as much as you do not want to fall into a coma or develop complications, it is best to rest for proper healing and regeneration, only after confirming that you have no slurred speech, deterioration and disorientation.
Closely monitor signs 3 to 6 hours after concussion since this is when symptoms show. Try as much as possible to stay awake and visit the clinic if you notice any of the following symptoms:
- Chronic Headaches
- Feelings of numbness and decreased coordination
- Loss of consciousness
- Inability to wake up
- Repeated nausea and vomiting
- Exacerbated symptoms
- Persistent symptoms after 10 to 14 days
- Multiple concussion
How Does A Concussion Affect Sleep?
Sleep is a period of rest and recuperation required for the body. Sleep is necessary after a hectic day’s routine, a stressful interview, presentations or your daily activity.
It helps energize your body, this is because your body needs quality rest for proper functionality. A sleep-deprived body person is susceptible to sickness, fatigue and so many other complications.
A concussion or brain injury can affect your body’s functionality, although this mostly depends on the severity of the impact. A mild injury can heal without complications, while a more serious or chronic one causes various issues.
Many people experience post-concussive syndrome along with sleep disturbances. These sleep disorders can affect and deter the recovery process. There are two sleep conditions likely to occur after a concussion.
Insomnia and Hypersomnia are sleep disorders that occur after a concussion. Hypersomnia affects your sleep patterns. Here you may sleep way more than normal while insomnia involves difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep. These unhealthy sleep patterns can worsen your condition and trigger other medical problems.
What Is A Concussion?
A concussion is typically a direct trauma or brain injury caused by a blow to the head, neck or body. This can lead to loss of consciousness followed by a brief period of amnesia or forgetfulness.
It causes a temporary loss of brain function and alters normal brain processes and also affects speech, memory, balance, reflex, and brain coordination.
Accidents happen sometimes, whether from a car, fight, falling, getting hit, and many more. Whatever the case may be, these accidents or actions may have a direct hit on parts of the body such as the head or neck.
When this happens, there may be a momentary loss of proper thinking or disorientation that results in a concussion or mild traumatic brain injury.
Many people assume concussion involves total passing out, but this is not always the case because the impact of physical trauma usually depends on the severity of the action or accident.
What Are The Signs Of A Concussion?
A concussion can cause mild symptoms or more serious cases depending on the severity of impact. The most common sign of a concussion is disorientation followed by headache.
Dizziness, disequilibrium, and imbalance occur almost immediately after trauma to the brain. This is mostly accompanied by a headache and vision disturbances.
This is the fear of light. Your eyes become extra sensitive to light and there may be blurry or double vision.
Sound distortion is prevalent in concussions; you may also experience tinnitus or ringing sensations in your ear. Some sounds may become harmful and seem too loud or scratchy.
Amnesia, forgetfulness, and temporarily forgetting what happened before or during the accident is not uncommon. Confusion occurs and everything seems to happen all at once.
A concussion can affect or disrupt your usual sleep patterns, you find it harder to fall or stay asleep.
Vomiting and a dazed feeling are other symptoms that occur. This is because of the spinning sensation after trauma to the head or brain.
Anosmia, loss or absence of a sense of smell is prone to happen. People with mild traumatic brain injury may smell nothing as soon as the incidence happens.
What Are The Effects Of A Concussion?
A concussion can have a devastating effect sometimes. Second impact concussion usually results from fatal brain injuries and leads to the post-concussive syndrome. A post-concussive syndrome is a persistent symptom that occurs after a concussion; people who experience this are advised to take enough rest and avoid exerting physical exercises since these put them at the risk of repeated occurrence.
Feelings of sadness, anger, loss of interest in basic daily routine may sometimes occur because of the impact on your mental health.
Sleep disturbances, overthinking, fear and restriction of normal activities are not left out. People who have previous concussion experience develop anxiety as a coping mechanism to help counteract consequences of their mental stress.
Post-traumatic stress disorder is a condition that occurs after a traumatic event or situation. It arises as a kind of coping skill. This issue can be triggered by stress, fatigue, depression, and anxiety.
Simple or severe damage to the brain may occur, leading to loss of focus and attention. However, this is not always the case, as most concussions do not result in chronic symptoms.
Negative cognitive behaviors like mood swings, irritability, frequent interruptions, personality changes, memory and concentration problems are prevalent.
Physical effects like occasional headaches, excessive drowsiness, fatigue,
are more likely to occur for several weeks or months after a concussion.
What Causes A Concussion?
There are several things that can lead to brain injury. It can be a blow to your head, neck, chest or even other parts of the body. A direct hit or force to the head is a major cause of this condition.
Activities that exert force to your head trigger brain injuries or damage. It could be from accidents, falling, getting hit, or being involved in a fight.
The prevalence rate of concussions is high among athletes. This is because a lot of these sport activities require a strenuous process and a higher tendency to develop injuries. Although there are immediate treatment methods available for injuries, most of them result in serious lifelong problems.
Unfortunate occurrences from even the smallest slip can cause serious damage, a fall from the stairs, a bump or violent jolt to the head, a vehicle or bike accident, a hit to your jaw or chest area can also lead to brain injury especially if you are hit in the part connected to your brain.
How To Get Relief From Concussion
A diagnosis is sometimes necessary in a severe case, especially if there is internal bleeding and injury to the brain. This involves a series of scans and examinations to assess your symptoms, prevalence, severity, onset and duration.
Rest is the most common treatment method for a concussion. You should rest well for a gradual healing process, as long as there are no complications and bleeding or serious damage to the brain.
A series of therapies are sometimes used to help target specific symptoms. This is mostly used in more serious conditions.
Painkillers are often used for persistent headaches, however, this is only if your doctor recommends it. Always read the leaflets in case of side effects that may affect your current situation.
Other activities that can influence your healing process includes:
- Stay away from alcohol
- Avoid strenuous activities until you are fully recovered
- Put every sport or other strenuous activity on hold for at least a week
- Avoid contact sports
- Always use proper gear protection during sport or strenuous activities
- Never forget to put on your seat belt when driving
- Wear a helmet when riding a bicycle or horse
- Make sure you are supervised and trained by a professional during contact sport
Concussions require a steady and gradual process of treatment, this involves patience because it may sometimes take a while to heal completely. Do not do or use things that may worsen your injury and strictly follow your doctor’s prescription.