Signs of a Concussion

Concussion x-ray
Concussion x-ray

Are you concerned you have suffered a concussion?

Watch: Tips for Improving Brain Health

A concussion consists of a traumatic brain injury that can affect someone's brain function. The Mayo Clinic notes the signs and symptoms of a concussion can be subtle and in some instances may not present immediately. Concussion symptoms can last for days, weeks or longer. The signs and symptoms of a concussion may include:

  • Headache or a feeling of pressure in the head
  • Temporary loss of consciousness
  • Confusion or feeling as you are in a fog
  • Amnesia surrounding the traumatic incident
  • Dizziness or "seeing stars"
  • Ringing in the ears
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Slurred speech
  • Delayed response to someone asking questions
  • Appearing dazed
  • Fatigue

Delayed symptoms of a concussion may include:

  • Concentration and memory complaints
  • Irritability and other personality changes
  • Sensitivity to light and/or noise
  • Disturbances in sleep
  • Psychological adjustment problems and depression
  • Disorders of taste and smell

Watch: Do New Brain Cells Stop Growing as We Age?

The Mayo Clinic recommends seeking immediate emergency care if these symptoms occur after a head injury: 

  • Repeated vomiting
  • A loss of consciousness lasting longer than 30 seconds
  • A headache that gets worse over time
  • Changes in his or her behavior, such as irritability
  • Changes in physical coordination, such as stumbling or clumsiness
  • Confusion or disorientation, such as difficulty recognizing people or places
  • Slurred speech or other changes in speech
  • Seizures
  • Vision or eye disturbances, such as pupils that are bigger than normal (dilated pupils) or pupils of unequal sizes
  • Lasting or recurrent dizziness
  • Difficulty with mental function or physical coordination
  • Symptoms that worsen over time
  • Large head bumps or bruises on areas other than the forehead in children, especially in infants under 12 months of age
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