What are the Common Symptoms of a Concussion?

Lists of Common Concussion SymptomsIt is very common for a client to come into our office after a bicycle crash, car collision or fall describing common symptoms of a concussion. Many of them have been diagnosed at the emergency room or by their primary care physician, but others have not. Sometimes they know something is just not right in how they think or feel, yet they haven’t connected the dots that it could be concussion related. Often their medical professional has not connected the dots either.

No one can diagnose whether you have suffered a concussion or head injury by reading an article. It is our hope however, that you may recognize some of the more common symptoms of a concussion and bring these to the attention of your doctor. We find that many patients will describe concussion symptoms to their physician if they are specifically asked about them. Without being specifically asked in detail or being given the opportunity to identify symptoms on a physician’s intake form the patient may never volunteer to their doctor what they are experiencing. Consequently many concussions go undiagnosed. This not only harms the patient’s medical care but has a devastating impact on their potential injury claim.

Physical Symptoms of a Concussion

  • nausea or vomiting
  • blurry or double vision
  • disorientation
  • room spins/feeling woozy
  • balance problems
  • difficulty walking
  • very tired
  • dozing during the day
  • difficulty writing
  • change in sexual function
  • reduce confidence
  • feeling helplessness
  • apathy
  • change in sense of taste or smell
  • hearing problems
     

Mental Functioning (Cognitive) Symptoms

  • difficulty concentrating/ daydreaming, difficulty focusing
  • confused
  • attention problems
  • can’t remember numbers or names
  • reading problems
  • problems adding and subtracting
  • difficulty learning new things
  • difficulty understanding/rereading things
  • difficulty making decisions
  • difficulty planning or organizing
     

Emotional Symptoms of a Concussion

  • wanting to be alone
  • mood swings
  • agitation
  • sadness or tearful
  • feeling isolated from others
  • nervousness
  • anger
  • helplessness
  • apathy
  • irritable/impatience
  • frustration
  • more emotional


Sleep Symptoms

  • sleeping more or less than usual
  • trouble falling asleep
  • drowsiness


Common Signs of a Concussion

  • retrograde amnesia (having no memory of events for a period before the injury)
  • anterograde amnesia (having no memory of the events for it after the injury)
  • loss of consciousness for any period of time
  • appearing or feeling dazed or stunned
  • having confusion about the event (crash or fall for instance)
  • responds slowly when questioned
  • repeats questions that have been asked
  • forgetful of recent information

Anyone with any of the common signs of a concussion should seek medical attention immediately. While it is doubtful that someone would experience all of the symptoms described above, even a few of them can be life-changing. Bring these symptoms to the attention of a medical professional at the earliest opportunity.