When concussions trickle into the classroom and “life”, what do we do? Well if you have read this blog long enough I trust that you know the answer. If you have not, or are a true skeptic about the lasting effects of a concussion, most prominently in the classroom of the adolescent individual perhaps you should read this article by Holly Klaft of Jackson Citizen Patriot seen on mlive.com.
Klaft takes a look at a high school athlete that had a couple of concussions, Bennett Thomson;
Bennett’s concussion occurred during a varsity soccer game against Northwest High School in September when he and an opponent both went up for a header. The other player came down on top of Bennett’s head, splitting it open.
Bennett was treated and then went home.
Then the headaches started and he couldn’t focus. Concentrating on schoolwork became difficult.
Remembering conversations and events was a challenge.
His grades fell from A’s and B’s to C’s and D’s, his parents said.
The symptoms lasted for weeks, but eventually Bennett’s academic performance improved. The Thomsons did not immediately make a connection between his grades and his earlier head injury.
“It wasn’t until I was at a conference for school that a colleague told me about the effect sports concussions have in the classroom,” said Zac Thomson, a social worker for the Calhoun County Intermediate School District. “I shared it with my wife, and her eyes got big.”
As a result the Thomson’s were ready to handle his next concussion and made academic accommodations from the beginning of the process and it helped Bennett. It has also made his family understand that injuries, including concussions are part of sports; it will not deter Bennett from continuing as long as he heals correctly.
This underscores the mantra of this site and my opinion; the injury of concussion is not the problem or even a “major” issue, IF IT IS MANAGED CORRECTLY FROM THE BEGINNING. Changing how we view this injury from the medical professional to the spectator will help effect the change of the stigma of concussions. Start thinking of a concussion as an injury that will require an undetermined amount of time to heal (90% are resolved in 10-14 days), but only time will help. And above and beyond knowing how to handle the injury as not to increase symptoms is the key, a.k.a. REST!