What I learned after my daughter’s concussion

When my kids sign up for a school sport, I am bombarded with handouts explaining the dangers of concussions. I skim the information and move on. I hadn’t worried too much about the effects of a concussion, until the winter break.

My high school daughter was skiing with friends and fell and hit her head. She was wearing a helmet and goggles, but still managed to get a bloody nose. The fall didn’t knock her out, but left her dazed and surprised. She didn’t think it was a big deal and skied the rest of the way down the mountain.

The following morning, she tried to go about her day, but found it difficult to maintain her balance. She complained of a headache and light sensitivity. I suggested she lay down. Her headaches, sensitivity and a bit of nauseousness persisted for the next several days, but she managed the pain by taking naps, sitting in a dark quiet room, and minimizing her screen time.

After four days of resting, she went to school. She hoped she would be able to go to class and complete her assignments, but by lunch time, her head was throbbing and she called me to pick her up. After a doctor’s exam and CAT scan, I was assured she was recovering from a concussion. The doctor and I discussed her recovery and limited school attendance.

Here is what I learned; every concussion and recovery is different. The brain needs time to heal and overloading it with school work is not helpful. It’s important to protect the injured child while the brain heals.

So I did my mom duty and called the school. I wanted to make sure her academic advisor understood the situation. I explained her limited ability to attend class, take tests and complete assignments. The teachers were very understanding and agreed to pare back her work and assignments until she felt better.

My daughter’s recovery is slow, but improving. Thanks to understanding teachers, she is not overwhelmed with school work or assignments.

Concussions can be serious. If you worry that your child might have a concussion, here is a list of concussion symptoms and when to see a doctor.

Have your kids ever gotten a concussion?

Have you ever needed to talk to the school to modify your child’s school work to accommodate a recovery?


Melanie Flake

Melanie Flake

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