If you suffer a blow to the head, it's critical to receive immediate medical treatment. Assuming that you can recover without medical advice is a mistake, as this could result in additional injuries that lead to long-term complications.
Your medical team can run a battery of tests to determine if you have a concussion (and its severity). These include:
- Cranial computerized tomography (CT) scan
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
These tests are not used on all patients, but are typically ordered if you have symptoms such as seizures, vomiting or severe headaches.
Depending on your symptoms and prognosis, your doctor may suggest overnight hospitalization for observation. During this time, your care team will wake you regularly to ensure that you're alert and oriented. If everything checks out, you're likely to be discharged after one night.
Rest is the best way to treat a concussion, as it gives your brain time to rest and recover. Additionally, your doctor may suggest:
- Limited activity, especially any physical exertion like sports or manual labor
- Avoiding concentrating on mental tasks for extended periods, e.g., school work, video games, watching television and computer tasks
- Pain relievers to enable more comfortable rest
A head injury should never be ignored, as you never know its severity until you're examined by a medical professional. At that point, you'll have a clear idea of the treatment plan to follow.
As you continue to recover, look back at the accident that caused your head injury. If another person's negligence was the cause, you can learn more about your legal rights for seeking compensation.