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Former Australian Captain and batsman Steve Smith was forced to retire hurt from the Second Ashes Test at Lord s on the fourth day after being hit on the neck by a bouncer from the English fast bowler Jofra Archer.
The Aussie Cricketer was closely monitored overnight by a medical team but reportedly woke up with a feeling of grogginess and headache. Smith has been diagnosed with a concussion and his involvement in the third test will be decided after assessing him over the next few days.
What is a Concussion?
A concussion refers to a brain injury caused by a severe blow to the head or violent shaking of the body and head, resulting in temporary loss of normal brain function. It is commonly believed that concussions involve loss of consciousness but that is not true. In most cases, a person with a concussion never loses consciousness. However, those who suffer a concussion may act confused and are unable to remember what happened immediately before or after the injury. Such a condition can affect reflexes, judgement, memory and balance, speech, and muscle coordination.
What could possibly cause a concussion?
The most common causes of concussion are sports injuries and traumatic accidents. The sudden jerk or movement causes the brain to twist or bounce around inside the skull, eventually leading to damaging and stretching of brain cells and chemical changes in the brain. A bump or push to the body may also result in a concussion if the impact is powerful enough to force the head to jerk forward, backward, or to the side.
Most cases of concussions occur on the field while playing a game of cricket, football, or basketball. These are also common while riding a bike.
A concussion is usually mild and harmless. However, its effects can be serious and may last for days or weeks.
What are the symptoms?
In most cases, there are no external signs of head trauma. However, a person suffering a concussion may experience symptoms such as the following
Dizziness or problems with balancing
Sensitivity to noise and light
Drowsiness or fatigue
Trouble concentrating and/or comprehending
Nervousness, sadness, or irritability
Feeling of being just not right
If headache worsens, it could be an indication of internal bleeding in the skull.
Other potentially dangerous signs include
Not recognizing places or people
The above symptoms usually are noticeable within a few minutes of the injury or blow to the head. One should consult a doctor immediately for medical attention.
There is no specific treatment for concussions. However, there are ways you may be able to prevent such an incident from occurring.
To avoid or reduce the risks of a concussion, you should abide by the following precautionary measures
While driving, always wear a seat belt
While riding, be sure to put on your helmet the helmet should be secure and not easily moveable when you shake your head.
Put up handrails on the staircase to prevent falls
Install safety gates on the stairs to protect children and infants
Put grab bars in the washroom cover the floors and the tub with non-slip mats
Remove trip hazards and improve lighting
Install safety guards by the windows to keep your kids from falling out
The symptoms of a concussion can be managed using pain medication. You will be advised to rest and restrain from participating in activities to allow the brain to recover.
Most people recover completely following a concussion. The period of recovery, however, depends on the severity of the injury and the effectiveness of the treatment plan. Identify the symptoms and seek medical assistance at the earliest.