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Why early treatment for a concussion makes a difference in recovery

If your child suffered a concussion, whether while playing sports, in a car crash, in a fight or after a fall, your doctor may have just told you that there’s not much you can do but be patient and that you just have to give it time to heal. That can be difficult – for both you and your child.

Concussions, which are an injury to the brain, can cause physical, emotional and cognitive symptoms. These can include headaches, dizziness, memory loss, insomnia, mood changes and more. They can last for weeks, months and even longer.

A study of young athletes offers clarity

However, there’s evidence that early treatment can speed up recovery from concussions in young people. In a study last year that was published in JAMA Neurology, researchers in a sports concussion program analyzed 162 athletes ages 12 through 22 who had suffered concussions.

They found that the young people who received clinical care within the first week following their injury recovered more quickly than those who weren’t treated until later (anywhere from eight days to three weeks after suffering their concussion).

The researchers noted that it wasn’t that the recovery process itself took less time if someone was treated early. It’s just that by getting the right care early, symptoms dissipated sooner than they would have if a concussion sufferer waited weeks to begin treatment.

The study’s lead author said, “Our study emphasizes the importance of seeking appropriate, specialized care early on.” He also noted that it’s important to do similar research with military service members and others who have suffered concussions will be useful.

What does clinical care for a concussion include?

An official with a university sports medicine program notes, “Early clinical care including behavioral management interventions and targeted exertion, vestibular and oculomotor rehabilitation exercises also may minimize missed time at work, school, or sports, helping the patient return to a normal routine sooner.”

No matter how your child was injured, it’s essential to get them diagnosed and begin treatment as soon as possible. This can help minimize the effects of the injury on their health and their life. If the injury was the result of someone else’s negligence or actions, find out what your options are for seeking the compensation you need to cover their medical care and other expenses and damages.

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