Home Health and Fitness New concussion protocol for kids: Get them back to school sooner

New concussion protocol for kids: Get them back to school sooner

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For years, the treatment protocol for children with concussions was to take them out of school to rest in a quiet, dark room and limit their access to screens until they felt better. Over the past decade, doctors have moved toward encouraging children to return to school and do light activities after a few days of rest, even if symptoms persist.

Ah recently published research Over 1,500 children have joined and supported our new approach. Early return to school—defined by the researchers as her absence of less than three days—had benefits for children aged 8 to 18, more severe two weeks after concussion compared to children who stayed home longer. I have found that my symptoms have lessened. In fact, the longer they stayed home, the slower they seemed to recover.

Christopher Vaughan, a neuropsychologist at Children’s National Hospital in Washington who led the study, said: It aims to make it possible.

Many doctors and institutions have already adopted that treatment plan. “We certainly changed the protocol to say that too much rest is not good, that individuals need to get back to activity as soon as they can tolerate it, and that they make modifications and let their bodies heal. The environment that is school for children,” said Paul Berkner, a pediatrician, director of medicine at the University of New England and president of the Maine Concussion Management Initiative.

The new study “confirms our recommendations and lends credence to the fact that if you actually do it, you may get better sooner,” he added.

“About a quarter or more of the population has a concussion, many of which occur in childhood,” Vaughan said. We take all injuries seriously because brain injuries can be harmful if not treated properly.”

He worked with colleagues at hospitals and universities across Canada to determine whether the number of days a child was out of school after a concussion affected symptoms. We analyzed records from a previous study of 1,630 children aged 5 to 18 years who were treated for concussion in . There were equal numbers of men and women, and concussions were not limited to those caused by sports. Children were absent from school for an average of 3 to 5 days, and younger children returned to school earlier than older children on average.

This study showed a “significant” association between early return to school and improvement in symptoms in children aged 8 years and older, especially those who first felt sick. Findings for children as young as 7 years were not available.) This suggests that returning to school earlier reduces the stress of missed classes and helps children stay on a regular sleep schedule. , suggesting that it may be possible to maintain light sleep and resume light sleep. -Moderate physical activity early, they believe, all of which leads to faster recovery. It was suggested that the viewing time may be longer.

Berkner said the parents of most of the patients he’s treated aren’t against the new recommendations.

“Most schools have concussion protocols for both physical activity and schoolwork,” said Sigrid Wolff, a pediatric sports physician at Lurie Children’s Hospital in Chicago. Illinois should have a concussion monitoring team in each school to help provide accommodations such as taking breaks, devoting time to tests and assignments, and reading print rather than on-screen text.

You won’t go to the gymnasium grass or rest areas, but you’ll be encouraged to do light activities like walking or riding a stationary bike. “Light to moderate physical activity also helps children recover from concussions faster,” Wolfe said.

A concussion damages connections between nerve cells in the brain, altering brain function until those pathways are repaired. After a concussion, it’s important to give your brain enough time to rewire itself. If a child returns to motor activity and suffers another concussion before the brain has healed, that second injury can cause more severe symptoms and, in rare cases, can lead to swelling of the brain.

But concussions only slightly increase the risk of subsequent concussions, Wolf said. not necessarily a concussion.”

According to Wolf, concussion symptoms fall into five categories. vestibular symptoms, such as dizziness or balance problems; cognitive symptoms, such as memory, concentration, and processing speed; emotional symptoms, such as irritability, depressed or anxious mood; fatigue, increased sleep onset, or sleep maintenance. sleep and energy symptoms, such as difficulty with

If a concussion is suspected during the activity, it is important to remove the child from the field or court immediately. “Children have been shown to recover faster if they are removed from play sooner,” she said. “Even if she continues to play for 15 minutes after a head injury is a risk factor for prolonged concussion symptoms.” Mantra: “When in doubt, pull them out.”

The next step is to consult a medical professional. A health care professional can help determine if your child has a concussion and when to return to school. For example, children with a history of headaches or migraines may need additional support to get back to school, Berkner said.

“We really learned more about concussions and how to treat them than we knew 10 years ago,” said Vaughan. “Many people still believe that exercising after a concussion is bad, but there are several studies in animals and humans that show that mild, non-contact therapy usually occurs a few days after a concussion. Beginning aerobic exercise has been shown to increase exercise speed.Recovery.”

Vaughan and Wolf also noted that concussion experts go away From pre-season baseline cognitive tests often administered by schools and athletic teams because of questions about test accuracy.

In deciding whether patients should return to sports, Vaughan looks to reports from children and their parents. Signs that the child has fully recovered include: Their parents think they are back to normal again. ”

Doctors want parents to understand the potential severity of concussions, but they also want them to be reassured by the fact that most children have recovered. Within 1 month.

“We take all brain injuries seriously, regardless of the name or number of symptoms that follow,” said Vaughan. “Thankfully, many [children] get better relatively quickly. And indeed, if someone does nothing to keep the brain damaged during the recovery process, it is expected that they will fully recover and return to normal life activities. ”

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