Caring For Basketball Concussions in Philadelphia

Worried you have a concussion after a few rounds of basketball? Here’s what to do.

Most people think of football when they think about athletic head injuries like concussions, but anyone who plays basketball knows that this very physical sport can also result in concussions. If you or a loved one has hit your head or sustained a neck injury playing basketball, and you’re seeing or feeling symptoms of a concussion, you may be wondering what to do. Doctors at Rothman Orthopaedic Institute have the latest information to understanding your condition, and making informed decisions about your treatment options. Here’s what players suffering symptoms of basketball concussions in Philadelphia and the surrounding region should know.

What is a concussion?

A concussion is a traumatic brain injury that occurs when the brain is moved too quickly in the skull. Concussions can occur for any number of reasons, but are very common in athletes, especially those playing high impact sports. Basketball concussions in Philadelphia and the surrounding area are often the result of an impact to the head, back, or neck, and may happen when a player is fouled, or when he suffers a fall during a game.

What are the symptoms of a concussion?

Concussions have numerous symptoms, some of which are easy to identify. These include:

  • Loss of consciousness

  • Confusion, foggy thoughts, inability to focus

  • Headache

  • Amnesia for the injury, the moments before, and the moments after

  • Seeing flashing lights or “seeing stars”

  • Nausea, with or without vomiting

  • Unusual tiredness

  • Dizziness

Those suffering a more severe concussion may experience:

  • Seizures

  • Uncontrolled, unnatural eye movements

  • Pupils that are differently dilated

  • Excessive, repeated vomiting

  • Long term confusion

  • Extended periods of unconsciousness

  • Balance and muscle control difficulty

  • Slurred speech

What should I do if I suspect that I or another player has a concussion?

Any player who shows signs of a concussion, or who has taken a strong hit to the head or neck should leave play immediately to be evaluated by a physician. Continuing to play with a concussion, or returning to play too early can result in a secondary concussion, known as second impact syndrome. This can have severe, permanent, and even fatal consequences. Anyone showing signs of a basketball concussion in Philadelphia should be cleared by a doctor before returning to the court.

basketball concussionsSometimes, an individual suffering from a severe concussion will be knocked out for an extended period of time. If this happens, it’s best to call for emergency medical help. Similarly, if a player has sustained a neck or back injury, don’t try to move them. Wait for help from paramedics, who can safely move the injured individual.

Fortunately, most players who sustain a basketball concussion remain conscious, or regain consciousness quickly, and can walk off the court under their  own power. In these cases, the individual should see a doctor as soon as possible, but you won’t need to call for emergency services.

How are basketball concussions in Philadelphia treated?

Any time someone suffers a concussion, the key to a full recovery is rest. This means you will need to limit:

  • Complex mental work, such as school work

  • Use of electronics, especially those with bright screens, including smartphones

  • Reading

  • Television

  • Exercise

  • Sports

  • Phone usage

  • Video games

Sleep is incredibly important to healing your brain and body, so your physician will recommend getting plenty of it. The length of time it takes to recover from a concussion will depend both on the severity of the injury, and the individual’s specific health history. Those who have sustained concussions in the past, for instance, may take longer to recover than those with no history of brain injury.

Where can I go for more information?

The physicians at Rothman Orthopaedic Institute, and our partners at the Jefferson Comprehensive Concussion Center are available to help you or your loved one learn about and recover from concussion. For more information, please visit us here or contact us at 1-800-321-9999.

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