Concussion Care

What is a Concussion? 

A concussion is a mild traumatic brain injury caused by a sudden blow to the head or body. This intense impact causes the brain to rapidly shift within the skull, resulting in a stretching injury to the brains cells. A concussion can affect brain function but many people will get better with time, rest, education, and a school/athletics accommodation plan. A concussion typically heals within a couple of weeks for most patients but can take much longer under certain circumstances.

Concussion Care at Atlantic Orthopaedics

It is critical that all head injuries be evaluated by a qualified health care provider, in some cases this means a visit to the ER or urgent care. Often, student athletes are evaluated by the school medical staff and are then referred on to a concussion specialist.

At Atlantic Orthopaedics, our team focuses on treating sports-related concussions in school aged children and young adults. An evaluation by our team will start with an exam to confirm the diagnosis. From there we will focus on education, rehabilitation, and a plan to return to school and sports. If a student athlete needs to be seen for concussion care, our Portsmouth orthopedic clinic can be reached at 603-431-1121 and our York orthopedic clinic can be reached at 207-363-3490. You may also choose to schedule an appointment online to be evaluated or treated or to fill our contact form with any questions. Thank you!

Concussion Symptoms & Injuries

Concussion symptoms vary a lot from person to person and from injury to injury. Some symptoms may not happen right away and can be mild or severe. Symptoms can last for days or even months. Common symptoms include:

  • Memory loss, or having trouble remembering the accident
  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Dizziness
  • Forgetfulness
  • Double or fuzzy vision
  • Sensitivity to light or noise
  • Feeling “foggy”
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Frequently tired, can’t stay awake
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Acting stunned or dazed
  • Moving clumsily
  • Responding slow
  • Exhibiting behavior or personality change
  • Whiplash
  • Falling
  • Colliding heads with another person
  • Getting hit with a ball or other object

Evaluate Your Concussion

Concussion Diagnostics & Treatments

Our sports medicine and general orthopedic physicians typically work with athletes and young adults to evaluate any signs of a concussion in order to deliver treatment and healing timelines that are relative to your exact concussion symptoms. 

The best way to avoid a concussion is to protect yourself from trauma to the head. Too many people suffer concussions when they neglect basic safety. Whenever possible, the following measures will help you avoid getting a concussion during sports, on the job, or while living out your daily life.

  • Wear a helmet during activities like biking, skiing, skating, snowmobiling, four-wheeling, or riding a motorcycle. 
  • Always wear your seatbelt in the car
  • Stay vigilant on the sidelines during sports — lookout for rogue players, balls, or other objects
  • Buy footwear with strong traction to avoid slips or falls
  • Be cautious when climbing ladders or other structures, such as scaffolding

You cannot guarantee you won’t suffer a concussion if you always play it safe, but you can increase the likelihood.

We understand that concussions are not always avoidable, or even entirely obvious.

Our physicians are trained to evaluate and treat sport-related concussion symptoms through in-person and telehealth visits.

In more complex cases, our team may choose to order advanced imaging, like MRI or X-Ray, to help understand the severity of your concussion and to treat it accordingly.

In any case, you will be provided with expected healing timelines and recovery protocol based on your unique circumstances, lifestyle, and work obligations.  

Rest is the #1 best course of action to treat your concussion. The following will also improve the healing process and minimize the expected timeline to a full recovery:

  • Limiting exposure to prescription medicine
  • Limiting or removing exposure to drugs and alcohol 
  • Taking a break from sports and high energy activities
  • Preventing re-injury through basic safety measures
  • Reduce screen time, including television and phones

In certain instances, our physicians may also refer you to Physical Therapy or Occupational Therapy to engage in ongoing recovery.

Treat Your Concussion

Treating Providers | Concussions

If you or someone you care about has experienced a concussion, we can help. We offer concussion testing and treatment in Portsmouth, NH, and York, ME.

Services Related to Concussion Care

After a concussion, or to identify if you’ve suffered a concussion, you may be referred to any of the following imaging or treatment services available at Atlantic Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine. Select a service from the list below to learn more.

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Atlantic Orthpaedics & Sports Medicine