Treatments and drugsBy Mayo Clinic staff
Rest is the best way to allow your brain to recover from a concussion. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends both physical and mental rest for children. This means avoiding general physical exertion as well as activities that require mental concentration, such as playing video games, watching TV, texting or using a computer. School workloads should also be temporarily reduced.
For headaches, use acetaminophen (Tylenol, others). Avoid other pain relievers such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, others) and aspirin, as there's a possibility these medications may increase the risk of bleeding.
If you or your child sustained a concussion while playing competitive sports, ask your doctor or your child's doctor when it is safe to return to play. Resuming sports too soon increases the risk of a second concussion and of lasting, potentially fatal brain injury.
No one should return to play or vigorous activity while signs or symptoms of a concussion are present. Experts recommend that children and adolescents not return to play on the same day as the injury.
- Head injury. American Academy of Pediatrics. http://www.healthychildren.org/English/health-issues/injuries-emergencies/Pages/Head-Injury.aspx. Accessed Dec. 2, 2010.
- Halstead ME, et al. Clinical report — Sport-related concussion in children and adolescents. Pediatrics. 2010;126:597.
- Heads up: Concussion in youth sports. A fact sheet for parents. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/concussion/pdf/parents_Eng.pdf. Accessed Dec. 2, 2010.
- Traumatic brain injury. The Merck Manuals: The Merck Manual for Healthcare Professionals. http://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/print/sec21/ch310/ch310a.html. Accessed Dec. 2, 2010.
- Evans RW. Concussion and mild traumatic brain injury. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed Dec. 2, 2010.
- Lovell M. The neurophysiology and assessment of sports-related head injuries. Neurologic Clinics. 2008;26:45.
- Heegaard W, et al. Traumatic brain injury. Emergency Medicine Clinics of North America. 2007;25:655.
- Schutzman S. Minor head trauma in infants and children. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed Dec. 2, 2010.
- Wetjen NM, et al. Second impact syndrome: Concussion and second injury brain complications. Journal of the American College of Surgeons. 2010;211:553.
- Lovell M. The management of sports-related concussion: Current status and future trends. Clinics in Sports Medicine. 2009;28:95.
- Position statement on sports concussion. American Academy of Neurology. http://www.aan.com/globals/axon/assets/7913.pdf. Accessed Jan. 10, 2010.
- McCrory P, et al. Consensus statement on concussion in sport: 3rd International Conference on Concussion in Sport held in Zurich, November 2008. Clinical Journal of Sport Medicine. 2009;19:185.