Facts About Concussion and Brain Injury

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Facts about Concussion and Brain Injury: Where To Get Help

What Is a Concussion?

A concussion is a type of traumatic brain injury—or TBI—caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head or by a hit to the body that causes the head and brain to move rapidly back and forth. This sudden movement can cause the brain to bounce around or twist in the skull, creating chemical changes in the brain and sometimes stretching and damaging brain cells.

Concussions Are Serious

Medical providers may describe a concussion as a “mild” brain injury because concussions are usually not life-threatening. Even so, the effects of a concussion can be serious.

Because the brain is very complex, every brain injury is different. Some symptoms may appear right away, while others may not show up for days or weeks after the concussion. Sometimes the injury makes it hard for people to recognize or to admit that they are having problems.

The signs of concussion can be subtle. Early on, problems may be missed by patients, family members, and doctors. People may look fine even though they’re acting or feeling differently.

Because all brain injuries are different, so is concussion recovery. Most people with mild injuries recover fully, but it can take time. Some symptoms can last for days, weeks, or longer.

In general, recovery is slower in older persons. Also, persons who have had a concussion in the past may find that it takes longer to recover from their current injury.

This article explains what can happen after a concussion, how to get better, and where to go for more information and help when needed.


Medical Help

People with a concussion need to be seen by a doctor. While most are seen in an emergency department or a doctor’s office, some people must stay in the hospital overnight.

Your doctor may do a scan of your brain (such as a CT scan) or other tests. Other tests, known as “neuropsychological” or “neurocognitive” tests, assess your learning and memory skills, your ability to pay attention or concentrate, and how quickly you can think and solve problems. These tests can help your doctor identify the effects of a concussion. Even if the concussion doesn’t show up on these tests, you may still have a concussion.

Your doctor will send you home with important instructions to follow. Be sure to follow all of your doctor’s instructions carefully.

If you are taking medications—prescription, over-the-counter medicines, or “natural remedies”—or if you drink alcohol or take illicit drugs, tell your doctor. Also, tell your doctor if you are taking blood thinners (anticoagulant drugs), such as Coumadin and aspirin, because they can increase the chance of complications.


Danger Signs

In rare cases, a dangerous collection of blood (hematoma) may form on the brain after a bump, blow, or jolt to the head or body that may squeeze the brain against the skull. Call 9-1-1 right away or contact your doctor or emergency department if you have one or more of the following danger signs after a bump, blow, or jolt to the head or body:

  • One pupil larger than the other.
  • Drowsiness or inability to wake up.
  • A headache that gets worse and does not go away.
  • Slurred speech, weakness, numbness, or decreased coordination.
  • Repeated vomiting or nausea, convulsions or seizures (shaking or twitching).
  • Unusual behavior, increased confusion, restlessness, or agitation.
  • Loss of consciousness (passed out/knocked out). Even a brief loss of consciousness should be taken seriously.

Danger Signs — Children, Toddlers, and Infants

Take your child to the emergency department right away if the child has received a blow or jolt to the head and:

  • Any of the signs and symptoms listed in the Danger Signs & Symptoms of a Concussion list.
  • Will not stop crying and cannot be consoled.
  • Will not nurse or eat.

Symptoms of Brain Injury

“I just don’t feel like myself.”

Persons of All Ages

Most people with a concussion have one or more of the symptoms listed below and recover fully within days, weeks or a few months. But for some people, symptoms of concussion can last even longer. Generally, if you feel that “something is not quite right,” or if you are feeling “foggy,” you should talk with your doctor.

Concussion symptoms are often grouped into four categories, including:

  • Remembering and Thinking
    • Difficulty thinking clearly
    • Feeling slowed down
    • Difficulty concentrating
    • Difficulty remembering new information
  • Physical
    • Headache
    • Nausea or vomiting (early on)
    • Balance problems
    • Dizziness
    • Fuzzy or blurry vision
    • Feeling tired, having no energy
    • Sensitivity to noise or light
  • Emotional/Mood
    • Irritability
    • Sadness
    • More emotional
    • Nervousness or anxiety
  • Sleep Disturbance
    • Sleeping more than usual
    • Sleeping less than usual
    • Trouble falling asleep

Some of these symptoms may appear right away, while others may not be noticed for days or months after the injury, or until the person starts resuming their everyday life and more demands are placed upon them. Sometimes, people do not recognize or admit that they are having problems. Others may not understand why they are having problems and what their problems really are, which can make them nervous and upset.

The signs and symptoms of a concussion can be difficult to sort out. Early on, problems may be missed by the person with the concussion, family members, or doctors. People may look fine even though they are acting or feeling differently.

Young Children

Very young children (i.e., infants, toddlers, and preschoolers) often bump and bruise their heads. This can happen as a result of motor vehicle crashes, falls, getting hit in the head with a ball or toy, or from tricycle/bike accidents. Sometimes these events can be serious and result in a concussion.

Young children can have the same symptoms of a concussion as older children, but it is harder for them to let others know how they are feeling. In addition to the symptoms mentioned on page 5, call your child’s doctor right away if your child seems to be getting worse or if you notice any of the following:

  • Crying more than usual
  • Headache that will not go away
  • Change in the way they play, perform or act at school
  • Change in nursing, eating, or sleeping patterns
  • Becoming easily upset or increased temper tantrums
  • Sad mood
  • Lack of interest in usual activities or favorite toys
  • Loss of new skills, such as toilet training
  • Loss of balance, unsteady walking
  • Poor attention

Older Adults

Because concussions are often missed or misdiagnosed among older adults, be especially alert if you know that an older adult has fallen or has a fall-related injury, such as a hip fracture. Older adults may have a higher risk of serious complications from a concussion, such as bleeding on the brain. Headaches that get worse or increased confusion are signs of this complication. If they occur, see a doctor right away. Older adults often take blood thinners; if they do, they should be seen immediately by a health care provider if they have a bump or blow to the head or body even if they do not have any of the symptoms listed above.


Getting Better

“Sometimes the best thing you can do is just rest and then try again later.”

Although most people recover fully after a concussion, how quickly they improve depends on many factors. These factors include how severe their concussion was, their age, how healthy they were before the concussion, and how they take care of themselves after the injury.

Some people who have had a concussion find that at first it is hard to do their daily activities, their job, to get along with everyone at home, or to relax. Ignoring your symptoms and trying to “tough it out” often makes symptoms worse.

Rest is very important after a concussion because it helps the brain to heal. You’ll need to be patient because healing takes time. Only when the symptoms have reduced significantly, in consultation with your doctor, should you slowly and gradually return to your daily activities, such as work or school. If your symptoms come back or you get new symptoms as you become more active, this is a sign that you are pushing yourself too hard. Stop these activities and take more time to rest and recover. As the days go by, you can expect to gradually feel better.

If you already had a medical condition at the time of your concussion (such as chronic headaches), it may take longer for you to recover from the concussion. Anxiety and depression may also make it harder to adjust to the symptoms of a concussion. While you are healing, you should be very careful to avoid doing anything that could cause a bump, blow, or jolt to the head or body. On rare occasions, receiving another concussion before the brain has healed can result in brain swelling, permanent brain damage, and even death, particularly among children and teens.

After you have recovered from your concussion, you should protect yourself from having another one. People who have had repeated concussions may have serious long-term problems, including chronic difficulty with concentration, memory, headache, and occasionally, physical skills, such as keeping one’s balance.

Tips for Healing: Adults

Here are a few tips to help you get better:

  • Get plenty of sleep at night, and rest during the day.
  • Avoid activities that are physically demanding (e.g., heavy housecleaning, weightlifting/working-out) or require a lot of concentration (e.g., balancing your checkbook). They can make your symptoms worse and slow your recovery.
  • Avoid activities, such as contact or recreational sports, that could lead to a second concussion. (It is best to avoid roller coasters or other high-speed rides that can make your symptoms worse or even cause a concussion.)
  • When your doctor says you are well enough, return to your normal activities gradually, not all at once.
  • Because your ability to react may be slower after a concussion, ask your doctor when you can safely drive a car, ride a bike, or operate heavy equipment.
  • Talk with your doctor about when you can return to work. Ask about how you can help your employer understand what has happened to you.
  • Consider talking with your employer about returning to work gradually and about changing your work activities or schedule until you recover (e.g., work half-days).
  • Take only those drugs that your doctor has approved.
  • Do not drink alcoholic beverages until your doctor says you are well enough. Alcohol and other drugs may slow your recovery and put you at risk of further injury.
  • Write down the things that may be harder than usual for you to remember.
  • If you’re easily distracted, try to do one thing at a time. For example, don’t try to watch TV while fixing dinner.
  • Consult with family members or close friends when making important decisions.
  • Do not neglect your basic needs, such as eating well and getting enough rest.
  • Avoid sustained computer use, including computer/video games early in the recovery process.
  • Some people report that flying in airplanes makes their symptoms worse shortly after a concussion.

Tips for Healing: Children

Parents and caregivers of children who have had a concussion can help them recover by taking an active role in their recovery:

  • Having the child get plenty of rest. Keep a regular sleep schedule, including no late nights and no sleepovers.
  • Making sure the child avoids high-risk/ high-speed activities such as riding a bicycle, playing sports, or climbing playground equipment, roller coasters or rides that could result in a second bump, blow, or jolt to the head or body. Children should not return to these types of activities until the doctor says they are well enough.
  • Giving the child only those drugs that are approved by the pediatrician or family physician.
  • Talking with the doctor about when the child should return to school and other activities and how the parent or caregiver can help the child deal with the challenges that the child may face. For example, your child may need to spend fewer hours at school, rest often, or require more time to take tests.
  • Sharing information about concussion with parents, siblings, teachers, counselors, babysitters, coaches, and others who interact with the child helps them understand what has happened and how to meet the child’s needs.

Where to Get Help

Help for People with Concussion

“It was the first time in my life that I couldn’t depend on myself.”

There are many people who can help you and your family as you recover from a concussion. You do not have to do it alone.

Show this article to your doctor or health care provider and talk with them about your concerns. Ask your doctor about whether you need specialized treatment and about the availability of rehabilitation programs.

Your doctor can help you find a health care provider who has special training in treating concussion. Early treatment of symptoms by a specialist may speed recovery. Your doctor may refer you to a neuropsychologist, neurologist, or specialist in rehabilitation.

Keep talking with your doctor, family members, and loved ones about how you are feeling, both physically and emotionally. If you do not think you are getting better, tell your doctor.

For more information, see the resources listed below.

Help for Families and Caregivers

“My husband used to be so calm. But after his injury, he started to explode over the littlest things. He didn’t even know that he had changed.”

When someone close to you has a concussion or a more serious brain injury, it can be hard to know how best to help. They may say that they are “fine” but you can tell from how they are acting that something has changed.

If you notice that your family member or friend has symptoms of a concussion that are getting worse, talk to them and their doctor about getting help. They may need help if you can answer YES to any of the following questions:

  • Are any of the concussion symptoms substantially affecting their life activities (such as feeling restricted in their activities due to symptoms, performance in school or at work has changed, unhappy with life changes)?
  • Has their personality changed?
  • Do they get angry for no reason?
  • Do they get lost or easily confused?
  • Do they have more trouble than usual making decisions?

You might want to talk with people who share your experience. The Brain Injury Association of America can put you in contact with people who can help (listed in the resource section below).

Resources for Getting Help

“I thought I was all alone, but I’m not. There are lots of people out there who understand what I’ve been through.”

Several groups help people and their families deal with concussion and more serious brain injuries. They provide information and put people in touch with local resources, such as support groups, rehabilitation services, and a variety of health care professionals.

  • CDC’s Injury Center has created resources and conducts research to help prevent concussion and more serious brain injuries and improve outcomes for survivors. For more information contact CDC toll-free at 1-800-CDC-INFO (1-800-232-4636) or visit CDC’s Injury Center on the Web at www.cdc.gov/TraumaticBrainInjury.
  • The Brain Injury Association of America (BIAA) has a national network of many state affiliates and hundreds of local chapters and support groups across the country that provide help in your community.

    You can reach BIAA by calling the toll-free National Brain Injury Information Center at 1-800-444-6443.

    You can also get information through their website at www.biausa.org. Both the help line and the website can provide you with information about the BIAA affiliate closest to you.

  • The Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center (DVBIC) works to ensure that active duty military and veterans with brain injury receive the best evaluation, treatment, and follow-up. You can reach DVBIC by calling toll-free at 1-800-870-9244 or by visiting their website at www.dvbic.org.

    For more information about TBI in the military, including an interactive website for service members, veterans, and families and caregivers, please visit: www.TraumaticBrainInjuryatoz.org.

From the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. www.cdc.gov.
Disclaimer: This information is not meant to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader is advised to always seek the advice of a physician prior to changing any treatment or to receive answers to questions regarding a specific medical condition.

Posted on BrainLine November 17, 2017

Disclaimer: This information is not meant to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader is advised to always seek the advice of a physician prior to changing any treatment or to receive answers to questions regarding a specific medical condition.


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2017, July 6). Traumatic Brain Injury & Concussion. Retrieved November 17, 2017, from www.cdc.gov

Comments (315)

Take your time reading this. There’s a lot of information.

One head injury before my most recent one was when I got into a fight and was walking away after the fight, a guy ran up behind me and bounced my head off a post. I may have had a concussion from that, but I was never checked.

My recent head injury was when my ex punched me in the head, above my ear. It swelled and was awful. I wasn't checked for that either. I was told recently that I may have had a concussion, but since it was 1.5 years prior, they wouldn't check me. It seemed that they were more interested in judging me for not getting help sooner, but if you do have a concussion, it doesn't make it easy for you to just get help. Because you can't think like you used to.

I think there should be better protocol in how to handle patients who have had or could possibly have had a concussion and more people should understand that the effects can last longer than a few months. Depression and anxiety are symptoms of a concussion and the doctors shouldn't think that the issue is the symptoms and not the cause.

Things are frustrating enough when you have a concussion. The last thing you need is judgment and assumptions being made. "No, I couldn't get help for over a year and I thought I was okay. I know, now, that I am not. "

My 22 yr old daughter was in a car accident in Nov 2017. She was ejected through and suffered a sub arachnoid hem, a gloved head injury, Box fx of C1, and fractures of T3,4,5. She was in icu for 3 weeks unconscious and then in rehab hospital for 2 weeks. She has finished her home therapy, OT/PT and speech. She is still weak, little energy, some short term memory loss and a very low voice. I feel she needs some kind of therapy to get her strength back but not sure where to turn. She has been dc'd from Neuro and Trauma. Hope you can steer us in the right direction as she is getting depressed because of inability to return to previous lifestyle

I'm 28 and I have suffered multiple concussions from a previous abusive relationship, 2 work related situations and now a car accident. I thought the car accident wasn't as serious as the others because I was rear ended but I've noticed more headaches, nausea, irritability, fogginess, blurred vision etc. It's been just over 2 weeks and I was finally able to return to one job but today I only made it 20 minutes into my call center job that I work at on weekends. I work 10.5 hour days all on a computer, in a loud room with bright fluorescent lights. Even now, sitting in silence with limited lighting, looking at this screen is making me dizzy and making my head pound. This particular employer has been insensitive about my current health predicament and uncooperative providing the paperwork I need for my lawyer. I'm really stressed out and worried I will lose my job over something that wasn't my fault. How can I make my employer understand the seriousness of a concussion (especially after multiple concussions) and that I don't know when I will be better?

Courtney, first of all, I'm glad you are no longer in that abusive relationship.
I had a concussion in July 2015 and was in a similar situation as you. I was actually unconscious though (don't know for how long as I live alone) after hitting tile on my bathroom floor after fainting. I went to the ER a few hours later when I commenced vomiting non-stop, and had scans done. Nothing showed in the scans thankfully, as in blood clots etc however I still experienced symptoms for a number of weeks. I work in a call center so I know exactly how that environment has affected you. I could only work an hour at first before leaving to go home but I was fortunate that I had an understanding employer where I didn't feel forced to stay at work when I was unwell and my head was spinning & feeling nauseous and overwhelmed. It took many weeks to recover, very gradually but the symptoms lessened after a few months. One of the managers though couldn't understand how I could still have symptoms three weeks after the event. People do not understand that the brain takes months to recover after trauma so I suggest the only way is to show them the medical documents and possibly suggest a website to educate them on brain injury recovery. Remember - your health comes FIRST. I had little money at the time because I am paid by the hour at that job which meant no work, no pay. However, I knew my brain and its recovery was my number one priority. I had no financial assistance or insurance but I was grateful that my sister helped pay for one month's rent on my apartment. Worst case scenario, if this employer doesn't understand, you mention this is one job so I'm assuming you have another? There is always a way out financially. Your recovery may be delayed by subjecting yourself to over-stimulation and stress. Hope this helps!

The week before Christmas I had been looking out my window to see who was at the door. When I thought I knew I was hurrying to get the door open. As I was turning my head towards the door my forehead caught the framing around the window. It was awful it cut my head and made me feel weak for a minute. That evening I started having dizzy spells. Laying back, when I turned over, when I stood up, and there was one that night that scared me more than any of them. I didn't think it was going to end. As these days go by I'm still having them I'm even getting dizzy climbing up ladders chairs or whatever along with the ones I've already mentioned. The knot is still there but not as big. Now I'm growing really concerned it's been two months but I have no insurance at this moment I'm in between jobs. what should I do ???

If you haven't yet, go to an emergency room or urgent care in the morning and ask them for help. Explain what happened. They can generally help you to apply for government funded medical insurance which will be retroactive, if you qualify, and cover the cost of care. Qualification details should be available online.

I had an accident on January 1st. A toll bar hit my head at work. I lost consciousness and my coworkers said I stop breathing twice. I have a concussion. I don't remember much. I've seen a Dr but I'm still feeling sick, too much dizziness and headache. It's hard to concentrate and I lose track easily. It's so frustrating. The Dr said to be patient it takes time but I don't understand what is happening to me. I don't even know what happened. I used to be so energetic and busy now I'm so slow. Can anybody suggest something, please?

You probably need a brain trauma specialist and therapies to help you recover. It is scary, I know, but they say that with therapies and rest you can recover. Get started right away. Ask your doctors for referrals. It's apparently very important.

Try CBD oil. Research it online for TBI

I was skiing on Saturday and I hit a jump and went about 20 feet into the air and fell to the ground and didn’t know where I was what day it was what time it was etc we immediately left the mountain and went to the emergency room I had a cat scan and they said I didn’t have a brain bleed and said I should try to relax and that I would be ok etc... I have been trying to relax as much as possible now but I still have a decently sized bump on the back of my head which is very tender and soft. I don’t remember ever falling so I don’t know what I hit first I do know that I was unconscious for around 1:30-200. How long will this bump be here and is my skull ok? Any other information would be nice also ps: I have been very alert to anything such as headaches and have notified everyone I am 15

I hit a tree skiing December 17. Everything was black when I woke up. When I did get my sight back everything was blurry. I was brought to the ER and admitted to the hospital for 1 night. No brain bleed but I had a concussion. Stay off the computer and phone. and sit in a quiet room as often as possible. You need to rest your brain. No strenuous activity either. If it is still bothering you I would go back to the dr.
Good luck.

Hey guys i got a concussion last month snowboarding on a very bad icy condition. On my last and final run where my legs started to give out i hit my head so hard not being able to land the jump and another thing is that i didnt wear a helmet. The doctors told me my symptoms may last up to 6 months to a year. Im very depressed and easily fatigued with all the activities i used to enjoy. Next time i go up that mountain im going to make sure the weather conditions are better and that im wearing a helmet. If i only wore a helmet that day i doubt id still have a concussion :(

I have epilepsy, I had a seizure in my sleep, fell off the couch, and gave myself a concussion during it. I didn't notice at the time. I live alone, and I woke up confused, i simply went right to sleep.
That day I had a migraine and couldn't focus, had super bad anxiety all day. Later that night I had another seizure driving my car and, luckily, only ran into a no parking sign. I believe this 2nd seizure may have been due to the concussion earlier that day, but who really knows?
Afterward, I had a severe migraine, vomited, couldn't walk, hardly talk. These are not normal after effects of my seizures. I got completely paranoid of everyone around me for over a week afterward. Then that changed to depression. I'm still in the depression part, apparently. I know depression never lasts forever. I remember hardly anything from the first 4-5 days after the initial concussion. My Neuro told me there are normal feelings and I had no need for a head scan because my symptoms were getting better.

Passed out and hit a concrete floor with my head. Was told severe concussion. Why am I not better after 6 weeks. I am very frustrated and worried. Everything I do is done with dizziness and such Fogginess that I become weak. And have to rest. I can’t think like I used to. Simple counting or playing a game like Yahtzee is hard to do. When will I be better. I am not use to down time. Always a busy person but now just walking makes me foggy. Seeing a PT and a sports Med dr. But I want to be better now

Hi Robin! December 17th, I passed out and hit my head on tile floor, got up like nothing and again passed out, hit my head again-this time on carpet. Here we are, April 9th and still feeling some effects; a little lightheaded, not sleeping well, lights bother me, lots of noise makes me want to run and hide. I was told "give it time", and although I have more good days than bad, like, you, I want to be better NOW. I'm not nauseated, no large pupil, no slurred speech, so I'm guessing what they say is true...only time will heal. It's scary thinking you'll never feel the same, but this is so common, we just have to believe what our doctors say...TIME! Best of luck to you as well.

I fell from a building in 1989 while at work, and suffered a concussion and multiple broken bones. I had (and still have) very bad dizzy spells that came and went. I was sent to a neurologist who asked me which way the room spun when I felt dizzy. I didn't know what to say because it was more of a back and forth feeling so I just said to the right. He then asked me to stand and he pushed my shoulder a couple times. After that he said I was fine. Since then I have continued to suffer from dizzy spells, I get lost even in buildings, my hands shake, very badly at times, I have trouble concentrating, I withdraw from social situations, I can't remember doing things like eating or what I ate. I have trouble at times identifying what I am seeing in pictures, its like I think to myself, "why cant I tell what this is". My sense of taste and smell is way off or deminished. The list goes on. I have learned to just cope with these things by accepting that this is just how it is. I do realize that things are getting worse. I am now 52 and very concerned as to how bad this will get. I dont know what to do. Reading the comments of others made me realize that I am not alone.

Hi, My younger brother had problem with his friends and they hit his head than it has some blood between the brain and skull after the doctor had treated him by ิัsurgery, his right eyelid couldn't open anymore and his voice is very weakness and doctor just let him go home by that situation so how to train or treat for him?

Hi, I m glad to see the comments are replied, but cant find the answers.. Thank you for your great job with thie website.
My problem is similar to many others: 1.5y after a cuncussion I feel my head heavy, have diziness, I am tired and sleepy etc. The sydroms are permanent whether I m having rest for days or not. When I m busy they just get worse.
My doctor gave up on me: subscibing antidressants for painkilling was the only thing she could do. I have given up on those as I could not stand their side effects.
Any help/comment is highly appreciated.
I have visited 3 doctors so far.. nobody was able to help me
Thank you a lot!

I had scholarship for rugby. I was use to playing football, so I lead tackles with my head. I was a stubborn person so when I knew it felt injured I shrugged it off in fear of being called a wussy. I didn’t know I had a problem with my head. Christmas break came and I went home, I decided to go to the VCU hospital. They said I suffered 6-8 concussions within the past 4 months. No wonder my grades dropped. I had slowly become more violent and close
Minded. The doctor said take a 6 month break from school. Give your self time to heal. He also said that drinking a beer with a my friends would be 7 beers to my brain. My life down spiraled after I took a break from school. I got in arguments more often with my family(single mom). So I moved out and looked to selling drugs. Everybody had weed, so I looked to Xanax. It sold quicker than anything. But I also became dependent on it. It ruined my life. I ruined my life. I should have thought that it might affect me more than others. I fact 7 time more than others. My anger became unmanageable, I lost my gf, the only person I actually had a soft spot for. I started robbing ppl, and doing things I never thought I was capable of. I’m proud to say that I’m literally a complete different person. I’m now 20. I was 18 when all this began. I try to remember the periodical order of the events in the 2015-2017 era of my life. And I’m ashamed when I do remember it. In one word to sum those 2 years of being a loser, sleeping on couches, and being a scumbag, I would choose “suicidal”. I’m had the opportunity to leave that environment and live with my grandparents. I’m very thankful. Brain injury is not a joke. Don’t be stubborn, seek help. Don’t get lost in the moment. If anybody need help, I’m not sure if I can provide, but will sure as hell try. Reply to this and I’ll check once every month.

Hi Brandon,

Thank you so much for your post. I had a concussion in Dec 2016. I never got it checked. I fell on my face and when I woke up the next day I could feel my brain hitting the skull. I went back to sleep and when I woke up it was fine. I continued the habit of drinking every day for the next three months. I was too stupid to realise the effects a concussion might have had. But then I stopped drinking completely for the next four months. I have had tinnitus for 5 years. But post concussion I felt that my tinnitus is increasing and now I am in a position where my tinnitus is over the roof. I joined the MBA program in August but I am not able to focus at all. I started drinking again. I feel that I have post concussion syndrome. WHo do you think I should seek help from?
I appreciate your concern for others. Hoping to hear from you soon.

I had a very serious brain injury from a fall 2 yrs. ago, I am now 80 yrs. old. Why do I still have much dizziness daily? My doctors do not know what to do for me to stop the dizziness. Thank you.

I hit my head hard two days ago on a metal weight bar. I had several symptoms of a concussion but they went away, and are now back. I took two ibuprofen and it hasn't helped. Should I see my doctor?

I was in a car accident back in July 2017 which spun my car into a concrete barrier. I remember feeling my brain "spin" and hit my skull and thinking "oh wow, I'm really hurt." But I had a hard time describing it to the doctor and he just said I was over-exaggerating. I didn't even think to look up concussion symptoms, because I thought to get one, you had to become unconscious. Now, after loads of research, I know better.

I had a 2-week long summer class that started literally two days after the accident and I honestly don't remember half of it. I'm struggling with short term memory now, specifically processing new information is hard for me, and my emotions feel like they've been kicked into overdrive. I used to have no trouble remembering things--and now I'll be in the middle of talking and I'll forget the word I want to use even though I know I know it! I still even occasionally feel the ache from where my brain hit my skull, and I've had trouble sleeping--though stress hasn't helped at all. I haven't gone to get a CT or MRI because I feel like nothing will show up on the scan and I don't want to waste money.

It's been a hard road, and I keep thinking things will improve in the next month, but it's been almost 5 months and it's been hard getting used to the "new" me. I'm not my old bubbly optimistic self, and I miss that most. I think the hardest part about having a concussion is that it's an invisible illness--you forget about it until it impacts your life in some way. Anyway, thanks to everyone who has contributed with their own stories--it's been really helpful to read and relate to. Here's hoping this month and next sees me one step closer to being the old me. Or at least accepting where I'm at.

U sound alot like my sister

I just wanted you to know that I feel so much for your injury and it took a lot for me to read your story out load to my husband because if I didn’t know better this is like looking in the mirror. My accident involves a guy running a red light back in Jan of 2013 wow I can’t believe it’s coming up on five years. The side airbag hit my left side of my head so hard that I just remember everything going white . I actually told a priest 2 weeks ago that I feel I died that day! Because the person I was isn’t the person I am now. It’s hard to explain to someone that at 36 years old you feel like what you believe people with Alzheimer’s feel like ! You have your good days which in our eyes are days when your loved ones aren’t mad at you because you can’t remember what they said five minutes ago or maybe you remember where that item was and you accused your teenager of taking something out of your room without asking. The really bad days are the laying in bed at night because no one can see a physical injury so you lay there at bed time cus your tired of feeling like a burden and that you know your smarter then your physical body is letting you be ! My first year of my accident was the hardest for my life my husband constantly fought with me wasn’t understanding at all . I’m just luck I married a man who took our vows seriously! Don’t get me wrong we def still have our fights and he tends to forget I’m not like I used to be and this is the new me is what tell him. I went to see a speech Therepist who worked with me for three months if I remember right or a month i can’t remember. But she told me you could possibly get better in a year or ten years but I will never be the same it’s my new normal whatever that is ! But like I said your story touched my heart and I couldn’t read it without bawling . Hang in there it’s our “new new “ our new normal!

thank you for the info i am doing a project on concussions and this helped me a lot

About 2 years ago I got hit on my left side of my temple, it hurt unlike anything else when it first happened, but I just thought it was like any other time I hit my head so I didn't go see a doctor or worry much about it... Now 2 years have passed and I am having really bad aching pain on that exact spot, when I touch that spot it hurts so bad, and it feels different compared to the other side of my temple, also my left eye starts hurting randomly or when I blink, the left side of my forehead is also very sensitive. I recently got ringing in my ears and blurred vision at work a few weeks back, too. I am so scared because I don't know what to do or what it is. I don't want to not wake up one day, either. If anyone knows what this could be please let me know.

This sounds exactly what I'm going through. I didn't see the doctor, either. Neither did I report it or press charges against my ex boyfriend for punching me in the head.
When the swelling went down, I thought I was okay. Then I started having problems in that area, migraines, extreme mood swings, and increased depression. I didn't know that I got a concussion. As I never got it checked. When I went to the hospital today, they told me that it was coincidence that it hurts in the same spot I got punched. They prescribed me pain meds and referred me to see a psychologist. It seems the doctors won't take me seriously because I didn't get it checked at the time. I made a mistake that they have no right to judge and blame me for. I need help, so do you, so do we all. I see that your post was made last year. I hope you go the help you need.

I hit my head hard on a door frame 9 days ago and saw my Dr. 3 days later as it was hurting so bad. As I'm on blood thinners, he said I needed to go to hospital for a CT scan immediately. The results came back clear and I was sent home, but the pain has gotten worse. I phoned the Dr. and was told to take Tylenol which doesn't work for me, he just doesn't seem concerned.

You need to see a neurologist. Do some research as neurologist specialize in certain aspects of the brain. (strokes, headaches, seizures etc) You may also want to look at some alternative healing like MCKS Pranic Healing (Check it out before you judge) Eat foods that are good for the brain and avoid all that isn't healthy for the brain. ( also excerdin for migraines helps some as well as the combination of taking with aspirin - get your doctors permission before you do this)

I have a 30 year old who is severe TBI from an auto accident 28 years most of her brain is dead but she walks talks runs remembers names high observant and understands more than people realize. My other child is 23 and has suffered 7 concussions and this one is having major brain issues and has little short term memory major head pain that does not seem to stop. We are dealing with those issues now.

I think that you have a concussion and that you need to go to the doctor again.

Did your doctor ask you to fill out a form called a concussion protocol, or an Acute Concussion Evaluation? This will result in a total symptom score, which can then advise your doctor as to the seriousness of your symptoms. Be an advocate and ask for a different type of test (MRI?? not sure). Good luck. I have also recently suffered from a concussion....it's been a rocky road for sure!!

About a month ago I got hit in the side of my head with a plastic drink that was unopened thrown from about 90 feet in the air estimated going about 50mph when it hit my head.

I am still having some issues that are alarming me. Still getting dizzy when I stand up or walk around, still have numbness on the side of my head, still have sharp pains and a constant headache, I can’t get my words out that I am wanting to say and still having blurry vision when trying to read anything
How long do these symptoms go on ??? When do you know if it is long term nerve damage?
I’m seeing a Neurologist and I have had several CT Scans and an MRI and tomorrow I get an EEG.
The scans so far show a severe concussion with some damage to nerves on the side of my head but they don’t give me a time frame for healing. Just keep telling me to be patient and relax. Don’t work... don’t do anything that uses my brain but how do I do that when I am the bread winner for my whole family of 6 and we don’t have money saved for me to take off work for months at a time?????

Got hit on the right side of my face near ear temple with a book on the job. Had all your symptoms and more was out of work four months. Best treatment vestibular treatment some symptoms get better but it takes time resting sleeping is the best thing to help your brain heal you will not be the same again. Understand being the bread winner part too try getting a lot off sleep when you are off work. People don’t believe when you are telling them your symptoms they can’t see it. but some symptoms get better with time it’s a year and a months since my injury still having problems the vestibular therapy help me cope Gods blessings it gets better with time.

I got a concussion back in August and I was diagnose PCS I haven’t been able to work bc of the dizziness, migraines and loss of memory, but my sleeping has been getting worse I can’t fall asleep I maybe fall asleep between 6 am-11 am and sleep a few hours. Has anyone had issues with sleep getting worse?

I was diagnosed with the same condition 18 mos again and still have issues with staying asleep at night. My neurologist placed me on Amitriptyline, 10mg. This med help me to stay asleep for a long time at night. When I don't take this med, I will surely have trouble staying asleep.

Fell and hit the back of my head in a parking lot a few months ago, knocked me out for an unknown amount of time... Woke/came to with extreme spinning, dizziness, loss of hearing in the left ear with loud ringing, loss of smell and taste, unable to walk without a cane (and I'm not even 30 yet!) Severe nausea and headaches, hort term memory loss, etc etc the list goes on... Went to the hospital the next day, an MRI showed no fractures so they basically kicked me out. I have no insurance and it's been almost three months and nothing has changed... I'm terrified.. is this normal? Should I be worried and seek advice from a specialist ​or just stop being a baby and wait it out? I can't function and none of my research is helping!

You may wonder, "what can I do?" The answer is: simply be present. Show up to the fight. Reach out to your old Veteran buddies, let them know that you are there if they need it. Let them know that you will answer the phone, day or night, rainstorm or snowstorm, close or far away. You don’t know what to say…that’s fine.


Anytime you are knocked out you have had a concussion.  A neurologist is who you need to see.  Research them as they specialize - strokes, seizures, headaches, etc.  Make sure to get your medical records from the hospital visit.   Note that tests on the brain do not show all the issues -such as defusion- also when you fell your brain bounced around and that can take time to heal.   

Most doctors charge less for cash payments when paid in full at the time of the visit.  Many hospitals have grants that with a proof of low income will write off testing.

It can take a year or more for your symptoms to subside or they may never. The first five years after a brain injury is when you see the most gains.

You may also some alternative healing such as MCKS Pranic Healing  (don't knock it till you try it   - its a non touch modality and has had proven results in many aspects of healing)

Eating for the brain is very important especially when you are healing.  Rest and de stress, rest heals the brain.

I fell 3yrs ago hit the back of my head. Have concussion still dealing with symptoms had swelling like for 2yrs memory problems cognitive and fears and emotional brain I have done without any meds for it and eating lots of protien hope to still heal but to tell you the truth it is a long heal and your patience are challenged every day a terrible injury to be honest just never give up and have hope work on the healing every day

Things really changed for me when I saw a D.O. (osteopath). It was SO worth the money. Take care ~

I had a very bad car accident last week and had concussion. my eyes are still very sensitive on lights, i get dizzy whenever I walk and i'm always tired. I hope it's nothing serious!

last Sunday I got knocked over playing kickball and slammed my head against the ground. This same thing happened about 4 years ago and I had a fractured skull and concussion from that incident. This time did not seem as bad but it has now been over a week and I am still having constant headaches, even after taking tylenol or ibuprofen. I also am not sleeping well and I notice every little sound. I have also noticed in the last few days that food does not taste good. Its almost like it tastes old or bland to me. I went to the dr last week and he said I most likely have a concussion but I do not know if I need to go back b/c of the headaches and lack of taste or if I just need rest.

i feel the same, my accident happened 11 dys ago but my headaches started occuring over a week ago, my headache although isnt gettinf worst, is always constant midly still, did yours end up improving ?

I fell and hit forehead on cement sidewalk 4 months ago, CT showed all OK, but definite concussion with extreme vomiting, etc.
Went thru PT for balance/dizzy issues 10 weeks; much better. Still struggling with exhaustion half the time; have 2-3 normal days, but I then crash (sleep 9-10 hours 2-3 nights). I've always been active and this is a little depressing and discouraging. I've heard it can take a year for full recovery for us older (70) gals. ????

I fell nearly a year ago, tripped in a pothole and fell face down on the cement in a grocery store parking lot and broke my nose, hit my for forehead so hard I had an acute concussion and was taken by ambulance to the hospital. The ER was so full, they put me in a wheelchair and made me wait for 5 hours before I was finally seen by a doctor and given xrays and a CT Scan. I was sent home that evening with pain medicine and ice packs, but not advised very well about my concussion. I went to a neurologist on my own 2 months later because I kept having sleep issues, dizzy, balance problems, and nausea. My vision has been blurry at times, and so noticeable lately, that I just associated the changes in my vision with my fall. I didn't realize head injury could effect vision. I was driving today, and had to position my eye glasses at a different angle to read the road signs. I forgot to tell my optometrist about my fall when I went 5 months ago. It's embarrassing to tell people why I've had memory and concentration problems. Friends seem to care for a little while, but no one understands unless they've been there. Concussion is very disruptive to your life, and it's easy to minimize it, or dismiss how much it does change your life and daily functioning because it's an invisible disorder. Friends who see the pictures of my face after my fall, are blown away at how awful my blue and purple swollen eyes and red lump above my eye looks, but they tell me how good I look now, and I want to cry, because I still have pain and tenderness where my head hit the pavement, and I know my personality feels different to me. I've had to rely on my self to recover and pace my self. It's an ongoing process. Be patient with your self, and realize,it takes time for the brain to heal. My neurologist said it might be a couple of years. It has been frustrating, but I did feel somewhat better reading every one else's experiences. I do think age plays a big part in recovery, I am going to be 60, so I do think being older may require longer for my concussion to heal. It could have been so much worse, the ER doc said I was lucky I didn't crack my skull open, but it did bruise the bone. It is amazing how resilient the human brain really is though, and I am thankful to still be here! Prayers to everyone for a fast and full recovery!

I believe that one of the most debilitating things dealing with concussions are the lack of knowledge of the basic concussion symptoms. A person may just overlook a concussion symptom as a ordinary feeling that may just go away in time such a common cold not knowing that these symptoms need to be reported and treated medically by an medical professional.

I hit the back of my head on a wall after a chair I was sitting in my officer broke. I didn't have any issues expect pain at the beginning which became ok after 10 minutes. I slept that night fine. Then the next day I started having headaches, which I still have 5 days after the injury. The headache is not severe but sometimes is bad. Even though at night I sleep well and when I sleep I don't feel any headache.

Aside from the headache I also started having nausea and I don't feel like eating. I do have acid reflux so I am not sure if that is causing it.

I went to see a doctor and he said there was no issues, that I was fine and i should only take anti-pain medicine.

So what I am asking is that, is it ok to feel this way after head injury?

I recieved a severe head injury in my home. I don't know how or when but I had so many other injuries my head injury seemed not important. After calling an ambulance and arriving at the hospital I was basically taken by the EMT's to the waiting room and dumped into a wheelchair. I was totally treated so badly after arriving at the hospital I tried to leave. After waiting 3.5 hrs I finally saw a Dr. After he ordered some test the Dr came back to tell me I had brain cancer and a broken wrist. I was very confused but not so much that I believed I had braincancer. I was admitted to the Hospital and was told I needed to call my family. My daughter wasn't speaking to me very much and I called her and she didn't seem to care. The nurse cam back and asked if I had gotten to call my daughter. I had but it was clear she wasn't coming and I felt so embarrassed that the hospital had to call her again. I guess she convinced her to come then all my family came in. I was heart broken that I was told I had brain cancer and my only child didn't care enough to show up. I was taken to surgery and after the surgery I was told it was a brainbleed and they had stopped the bleeding. I went home after 3 days in the hospital. I was alone and scared because I was having a hard time doing everything. I learned very quickly who my friends were and how much I was loved. The most important thing I learned is you can't depend on anyone but yourself. I know no matter what happens you have to get back up and believe in yourself. It has been 1 1/2 years and I am able to do everything I did before except use my hands without watching them. I never realized how many things I used to do without watching myself. I am more lucky than many.
Now over 5 months and still head spinning and ringing in my left ears but doctor's don't give medicine what should I do?

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