What Is Concussion Rehabilitation?

There is a dangerous trend of equating an injury with how visible the problem is. Of course, a broken bone or a torn ligament is going to create a scene, but this isn't a failsafe way to judge an injury. When an athlete blows out their knee it becomes something that everyone can see, and the pain on the player's face merely confirms what everyone else is already thinking: that injury is real, that injury is painful, and that person is going to need medical attention.

Head injuries aren't typically as visible. When someone hits their head on TV, they may become unconscious for a moment or they may be able to stand up right away. They might look dazed or need a minute to regain their ability to think straight, but then they can walk off the field just fine. The injury doesn't look as serious. And too often it isn't treated as seriously.

What You Need To Know About Concussions

A broken bone may be visible, but a concussion is in many ways far more serious a problem. A brain injury requires immediate and ongoing care to ensure that the brain can regain optimal functionality. On television, injuries that turn out to be “just a concussion” are often anti-climactic events that the audience is led to believe will be over in days, if not hours. In real life, however, these traumatic brain injuries usually stem from a fall, severe shaking, a car accident, or a direct blow to the head, which can severely impact a person's quality of life for several months.

A cold is typically more obvious than a chronic disease, but that doesn't make the chronic disease any less difficult to deal with. In fact, chronic disease is typically significantly more serious and complicated than the average cold. Similarly, concussions are not something that can be overlooked. Following brain injury, whether as a result of a sports concussion, a car accident, trip, fall, or other events, concussion therapy is absolutely necessary to ensure that there is no lasting damage following the trauma.

Left untreated, concussions can even inhibit growth in young children and bring on early dementia in older patients. Fortunately, the physiotherapy field is continually discovering new ways to help patients suffering from long-term concussion complications.

Finding Concussion Therapy Post-Trauma

Early identification and management of concussion symptoms are associated with better outcomes. Severe concussion symptoms (loss of consciousness, severe headache or neck pain, repeated vomiting, significant confusion, numbness/tingling/weakness in arms or legs, and seizures) should be assessed immediately in the emergency department. Mild to moderate symptoms should be assessed by your primary care physician or nurse practitioner as soon as possible. You should be referred to concussion rehabilitation early, to manage your symptoms and guide your return to activity. Physiotherapy can help you manage every phase of your concussion healing process, from early post-injury all the way to return to work, sports, and school.

In the case of concussions, research no longer supports complete mental and physical rest until symptoms subside. Your brain and body do need to heal and you do need to modify your activities to manage your symptoms and reduce the risk of a second concussion. But you should have help in determining how much activity is safe for your injury. Your physiotherapist is trained to help you to build a plan of modified activity to gradually return to your daily life.

You should seek treatment from a physiotherapist who has training in concussion rehabilitation. These physiotherapists have taken specialized courses to identify and treat the many components of concussion injury. At Amped Physiotherapy, we have several therapists trained in vestibular therapy to help you return to your daily life.

If you believe you have sustained a concussion, please contact Amped Physiotherapy so we can do a thorough exam and get you on a recovery plan!

FAQs on Concussions


What Is Post-Concussion Syndrome?

Post-concussion syndrome is when someone has suffered a concussion, and then develops persistent symptoms such as headaches, dizziness, memory loss, fatigue, irritability, depression, anxiety, and sleep disorders. Symptoms usually appear after two weeks and last for months or years. The cause of PCS is unknown, although some researchers believe it may be due to inflammation caused by a brain injury. This is why cognitive rest is essential after a concussion.


What Are the Common Symptoms of a Concussion?

Common concussion symptoms include headache, nausea, dizziness, fatigue, irritability, loss of appetite, sleep disturbances, memory difficulties, mood swings, poor concentration, reduced range of motion, coordination issues, sensitivity to bright lights, and difficulty remembering things. Post-concussion symptoms usually resolve within one week, although some may last longer. If you experience ongoing symptoms after a head injury, contact your doctor immediately.


Why Choose Amped Physiotherapy Clinic for Concussion in Ottawa?

We offer a comprehensive concussion management program that involves taking a complete history of previous concussions, initial assessment of cognitive function, physical therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, tips on brain trauma recovery, concussion awareness, education and counseling for brain trauma, and returns to activity guidelines. Our goal is to provide excellence in concussion care to help our patients recover from concussions quickly and safely. We also provide ongoing care so you can get back into sports and other activities faster. We offer a wide variety of treatment options including manual therapy.


How Long Does It Take To Recover From a Concussion?

It depends on many factors, but most people who suffer a mild concussion should be able to resume their normal daily routine within 1–2 weeks. Most patients who sustain moderate to severe injuries require 4–6 weeks before they are ready to return to full activity.


What Can Amped Physiotherapy Concussion Rehabilitation Help With?

Our concussion clinic has many health care professionals who can help with the following:

✔ Treatment of post-concussion syndrome

✔ Management of concussion symptoms

✔ Increase concussion awareness with concussion education

✔ Manage Neck pain and Neck Injuries

✔ Overcome Persistent symptoms

✔ Increase blood flow

✔ Rehabilitation exercises


What Are the Common Reasons for Concussions?

✔ Head impacts during physical activities

✔ Motor vehicle accidents

✔ Any brain trauma

✔ Sports Injury

✔ Neck injury

✔ High impact sports, etc


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