“You still have a concussion?” Anyone that has had a concussion has heard that question over and over. We are asked that by loved ones because they worry and because, unless you’ve been through it, it’s hard to understand the course of rehabilitation. The picture on today’s post is one I took after my first attempt at a brief walk-jog, almost 2 months after bumping my head. It caused a tiny bit of a setback, which then gave me the idea for today’s post.
I thought I’d include some of what my rehab has looked like to give everyone an idea of what how concussion recovery can progress. My initial symptoms of nausea and lightheadedness/dizziness were aggravated by cognitive tasks, screen time + other visual tasks such as driving and most significantly by lack of sleep or fatigue.
Treatment: 1-2x/week massage therapy and/or osteopathy + physio appointments – manual therapy is a big help!
Lifestyle modifications: put more breaks in my schedule, tried not to see too many patients back to back
– Stopped using my computer/ wrote charts on paper
– Stopped running
– Replaced other workouts with rest
– Earlier to bed as often as possible
Rehab setbacks and successes: one of the biggest contributors to fully recovering from a concussion is determining the patient’s ability to return to activities, or when to stop “resting” from everyday tasks. I tried adding various things back into my life too early in my recovery, which caused setbacks and major frustration! I think I’m on the right track now, but have yet to return to running and still feel pretty tired after a busy work day in clinic and then at home with my wonderful family.
Be patient with those going through concussion recovery, because their rehab is based on trial and error. No healing process is linear – we all have ups and downs along the way!
-Victoria Mokriy, PT