How Physio treats concussion

physio treat concussion

When physios traditionally treat sore shoulders and backs, how does physio treat concussion??


Concussion is a shake of the brain that causes the tiny nerves to be stretched, and the chemicals that transmit nerve impulses, to be mixed up. Symptoms of concussion include poor balance, dizziness, headaches, neck pain, nausea, tiredness and irritability.  


Concussion affects both the thinking ability of the brain and the physical capacity of the body.


Believe it or not, physiotherapy is a very natural setting to assess and treat concussion. The old fashioned way of treating concussion with complete rest in a dark room is very outdated – we now know that an active recovery promotes earlier return to sport and less chance of developing post-concussion syndrome.


How does Physiotherapy treat concussion?


1.     Monitored return to activity

     Physiotherapy uses the “pacing principles” of slowly increasing exposure to exercise intensity without causing pain or injury. We do this all the time rehabilitating patients with chronic fatigue, persistent low back pain and recovering from joint replacement. With Concussion Physiotherapy treatment, we help patients to pace brain and exercise demands; slowly increasing screen time, regulating homework time, slowly increase weights, running and physical contact without exacerbating symptoms.


2.    Neck Treatment

    It stands to reason that if there has been a force to the head strong enough to shake the brain, the neck has most likely been injured as well. In private practice Physiotherapy, neck pain is one of the main problems we treat patients for on a daily basis. We perform joint mobilisation, muscle massage, dry needling and neck rehabilitation exercises.


3.     Balance Rehabilitation

     Physiotherapy is very experienced treating balance problems!  We focus heavily on balance exercises for injuries such as ankle sprains, ACL reconstructions and even for falls prevention programs. Balance is often affected as the inner- ear balance system, neck joints/muscles and eye movement reflexes are often irritated with concussion.


Concussion recovery and treatment is a very deliberate but delicate balance between returning to school/work/screens (cognitive brain demands) and running/weights/contact sport (physical demands) whilst not exacerbating any symptoms.


With a thorough assessment from a concussion physio who can measure when a there has been a complete recovery from concussion;  combined with hands on treatment – players will confidently return to sport when they are healthy.


Spread the word, the best place to recover from concussion is with a concussion trained physio, who will link with your G.P. for the medical clearance.


Click on the links below to book online for a physiotherapy assessment and treatment or give us a call on 0438 648 884.

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