Seek medical attention
If you or a loved one is displaying the symptoms of a concussion, contact the Deaconess Concussion Clinic. A trained health care professional will evaluate you and develop a treatment plan to help return you to normal activities. Our staff will then work with you to create a schedule for your return to normal activities.
If you are displaying the danger signs, please go immediately to an emergency room
. To schedule an appointment with us please call 812-450-6700
Rest your body and brain
- Make sure to get plenty of sleep.
- When awake, avoid heavy exercise or unnecessary physical activity.
- Avoid activities that need concentration or a lot of attention.
- Decrease "screen time" on - computers, tablets, smart phones, testing, gaming systems, and TV.
- Do not drink alcohol.
- Take a mild pain relieving medication, such as Tylenol or acetaminophen.
If the patient is an athlete, keep them out of play.
Concussions take time to heal. Don't let your athlete return to play until a health professional says it's okay. Individuals who return to play too soon risk a greater chance of having a second concussion. Second impact syndrome can be very serious. Because the brain is altered during the concussion, a second impact before healing can result in rapid swelling resulting in permanent brain damage.
Coaches should know if their athlete has had a recent concussion in ANY sport. The coach may not know about a concussion in another activity unless you tell him or her.
Returning to Activites
After proper diagnoses and treatment, patients are often ready to return to their everyday activities. Individuals must be careful to avoid any additional injury or a second impact which could result in permanent brain damage.
Returning to Normal Activities and Work
Rest and limited exertion are keys for patients to recover from their concussion. Your health care provider will work with you to create the right returning to activities plan. Patients should be sure to get adequate sleep and may need to take breaks during the day to rest, as they heal from their concussion.
Returning to School
For children and youth, returning to school can be difficult; that's why your provider will help patients and their families create a returning to school plan. Students should ease back into their regular school work load and should inform their school nurse, teachers, and administrator of the injury.
Returning to Sports
Baseline: No Symptoms
As the baseline step of the Return to Play Progression, the athlete needs to have completed physical and cognitive rest and not be experiencing concussion symptoms for a minimum of 24 hours. Keep in mind, the younger the athlete, the more conservative the treatment.
Step 1: Light aerobic activity
Step 2: Moderate activity
- The Goal: Only to increase an athlete’s heart rate
- The Time: 5 to 10 minutes
- The Activities: Exercise bike, walking, or light jogging
- Absolutely no weight lifting, jumping or hard running
Step 3: Heavy, non-contact activity
- The Goal: Limited body and head movement
- The Time: Reduced from typical routine
- The Activities: Moderate jogging, brief running, moderate-intensity stationary biking, and moderate-intensity weightlifting
Step 4: Practice & full contact
- The Goal: More intense but non-contact
- The Time: Close to typical routine
- The Activities: Running, high-intensity stationary biking, the player’s regular weightlifting routine, and non-contact sport-specific drills. This stage may add some cognitive component to practice in addition to the aerobic and movement components introduced in Steps 1 and 2.
Step 5: Competition
- The Goal: Reintegrate in full contact practice
- The Goal: Return to competition