In the past years, the initial treatment for a concussion was to rest and avoid bright lights.
However, as the medical industry continues to evolve, new practices for treating concussions have risen. Doctors and brain specialists have gained a better understanding of the effects of concussions and the damages that might occur to the brain.
Concussions are also known as mild traumatic brain injuries (mTBIs). This type of injury to the brain causes a temporary loss of normal brain function, which can alter your mental state and result in a loss of consciousness.
Nowadays, the recommended course of action when receiving a blow to the head is to seek out medical attention immediately. But who should you go to when suffering from a concussion? Should you go see your primary doctor or visit a neurologist?
What Can a Neurologist Do for Your Concussion?
Before diving into what a neurologist can do to help with your concussion, let’s take a moment to understand what a neurologist is.
Neurologists are medical doctors who specialize in the function of the nervous system and the disorders that accompany it. These physicians are trained to treat any disorders that have to do with the brain, spinal cord, and nerves.
There are two sub specialties in neurology that have been proven to be the best choice for medically treating concussions.
The first sub specialty, and arguably the best option for treating mTBIs are sports neurologists. They are specially trained to deal with patients who have sustained injuries to the head that occurred while playing a sport.
This is the most ideal option of medical care because the sports neurologist uses a multi-disciplinary approach to help the patient.
Another sub specialty in neurology that is a good option for concussions is headache neurologists. These specialized doctors perform a detailed examination of your brain to determine the extent of the damage that had been inflicted by the concussion.
Both types of neurologists will perform exams that test mental status, speech, balance, reflexes, and vision.
Seeing a Walk-In Doctor vs. a Neurologist
Most people who have sustained concussions get over their symptoms in a couple of weeks and recover fully.
So how do you know if you should seek medical attention or wait a couple of days and see if the symptoms subside? Your best bet would be to get medical attention promptly.
Even though many people with concussions recover fully after a couple of weeks and have had their brain function returned to normal, a small percentage of people can develop a blood clot that is potentially life-threatening.
Your regular family doctor will not have the proper means to aid with your concussion management and treatment.
Neurologists who specialize in concussions conduct comprehensive neurological examinations that will uncover the areas of the brain that have been affected. These tests will allow the neurologist to create a more detailed diagnosis that a doctor at a walk-in clinic will not be able to reach.
Such tests will assess motor and sensory skills, and evaluate the function of hearing, speech, vision, and coordination abilities.
Concussion Management and Recovery In Ottawa
Have you recently experienced a blow to the head that has left you feeling dizzy and disoriented?
Concussions come in three different grades, some being mild while others can be more severe and painful. If you’re experiencing any symptoms, you should consult a concussion specialist at Broadview Health Centre.
Our concussion specialists have the experience in brain health as well as the equipment and training to provide you with the most accurate diagnosis and give you the treatment you need to have a full concussion recovery.
Get in touch with us to learn more about concussion management and book your appointment today.