What can you expect when recovering from a concussion?

People who suffer a concussion or mild traumatic brain injury often think these are just minor injuries that don't need much recovery time. And while every person is different, it is important to treat yourself with care after any brain injury - even a mild one.

Take it easy on yourself

Perhaps the most important thing to do is not to rush your recovery. According to the Brain Injury Association of America, people should "follow a gradual increase in activity levels" when they are getting over a brain injury. People who rush the process may experience issues such as:

  • Doing too much on a "good day." This can lead to feeling worse over the next few days.
  • Feeling tired and irritable at the end of the day.
  • Seeing physical and cognitive symptoms increase during the day.

It's understandable that when you start feeling better, you want to return to your level of activity before the injury, but that can just delay your recovery.

Stay in touch with your doctor

There may be no specific timetable for concussion recovery periods, but your doctor can help you understand your recovery. He or she will be able to determine whether you are progressing and whether you need additional treatment or assistance along the way.

Reach out for help when you need it

Asking family and friends for support during this time can ease your path to recovery. You may also need to ask for accommodations or assistance at work.

Is there a brain injury support group in your area? That is often a good way to connect with people who understand what you are going through. It helps to know you are not alone during this time.

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