Concussions Affect Teenagers and Children Too ... and GirlsMore Than Boys
Concussions are an increasingly common and dangerous problemaffecting people of all ages. Concussion treatment for teenagers isespecially important because injuries that affect people inchildhood set them up for several numbers of learning,emotional and health challenges that can affect them for decades tocome.
Doctors used to think that teenage boys playing football weremost likely to suffer concussions. It turns out that themost common group to suffer concussions are actually teenage girlswho swim or play soccer! How common are these sportsin Australia?!
Even though swimming is a non-contact sport, unexpected injuriesthat happen if you slam your head into the wall or wrench your neckgetting dumped off a wave in the ocean are what cause the problem.When it comes to soccer, it isn’t necessarily head-butting the ballthat causes the problem.
It is slide tackling and unexpected knees and elbows that hityou in the head. What is more concerning is that research alsoshows that girls recover twice as slow as boys if they dosuffer a concussion.
The Negative Effects of Post-Concussion Syndrome and CommonConcussion Treatment for Teenagers
Whether boy, girl, child, or adult the effects of a concussionare both cumulative and debilitating. Think of a concussion asa “brain sprain.” You suffer a traumatic injury that pulls orbruises your brain. The kicker is that the immediate effects of aconcussion are not always known.
In part, it is because you can suffer a concussion andstill not lose consciousness! Some of the early signs aregeneralized fatigue, headaches, or neck pain. However, the illeffects of “Post Concussion Syndrome” can be far more severe ifthey persist.
Some of the more common issues include developing migraineheadaches, dizziness, vertigo, nausea, learning disorders,inability to focus - the commonly described “brain fog” - mooddisorders, depression, and even suicidal thoughts. Even moresevere, these problems are not always limited to a few days orweeks.
They can affect the way that the brain develops throughadolescence and into adulthood, potentially causing problems thatwill affect a person for the rest of their life.The common medical approach to concussion treatment for teenagersis often a combination of psychotropic medications (to combatdepression) and a cocktail of painkillers (Oxycontin and Lyrica arecommon).
The problem is thais approach seldom resolves the underlyingissue. One essential part of recovery from Post-Concussion syndromeinvolves physiotherapy, which assists to retrain the brain.However, for many people even these eye-and-neck exercises are notenough.
Your Neck Plays a Massive Role in Post-Concussion Recovery
It turns out that the injury that caused the concussion not onlyaffected the brain, it also affected the upper neck, which limitsthe way that you can heal! The upper vertebrae in the neck - theatlas (C1) and the axis (C2) - are attached to the spinal cord byextremely strong ligaments called myodural bridges.
The problem is believed to occur if these vertebrae twist ofmisalign in such a way that causes them to get stuck out ofposition. If they do, they pull on the ligaments, which in turnpull on the brain tissue itself! So even long after the concussionhas passed, the “sprain” is still present!
The alignment of the upper vertebrae in the neck are alsoessential for the normal circulation of blood to the brain(arteries) and blood from the brain (veins). An increasing body ofresearch is showing that the alignment of the upper neck alsoaffect the flow of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), which plays a massiverole in the health of the central nervous system.
In fact, researchers from New York have discovered thatcorrecting the alignment of the C1 (atlas) in particular improvesthe flow of CSF, which ends up providing substantial relief for anumber of people suffering post-concussion syndrome.
Experts in this field have gone so far as to recommendthat this type of treatment called Upper Cervical Specific Careshould be an integral part in the recovery for all people whosuffer concussion injuries or any other traumas that affect theneck.
Specific Care - Concussion Treatment for Teenagers
In Australia, Upper Cervical Care is still widely unknown. Inpart, it is because there as so few experts in the upper neck(craniocervical junction). In fact, if you or your child even havean MRI of your head or neck, the MRI probably missed the C1 area!(It baffles my why, but I have not idea why MRIs are done thisway).
In brief, very few people are even looking at this mostimportant area of the body even when it is most essential forpeople who are suffering the effects of post-concussion syndrome!Dr Jeffrey Hannah specialises in the diagnosis, care and managementof people who suffering conditions of the upper neck, includingpost-concussion syndrome and concussion treatment forteenagers.
His practice, Atlas Health Australia, is conveniently located innorth Brisbane (North Lakes, just off the Bruce Highway) and seespeople from all across Australia who suffer neurological disordersdue to misalignment of the upper neck. Upper Cervical care is ascientific, precise and safe treatment for the most important areaof the body that does not require drugs or surgery.
If you or a loved one have suffered a concussion - even if youbelieve that you “feel fine” - it is imperative for your health nowand for decades to come to be certain that you are as well as youcan possibly be. Your health today is because of the choices youmade 1 year ago.
In turn, your health 1 year from now will be because of thechoices you make today. We hope that this article has been helpfuland helps those in need. If you are interested in having aconsultation or are looking for concussion treatment for teenagersin our North Lakes (Brisbane) office, you can call 07 31889329. We hope to see you soon.
- Smith FW, Dworkin JS (eds): The Craniocervical Syndrome andMRI. Basel, Karger, 2015. DOI:10.1159/000365463.