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How to Handle Concussion in Toddlers?

Dr. Ramakanth Reddy 94% (101 ratings)
MBBS, Diploma In Child Health
Pediatrician, Hyderabad  •  23 years experience
How to Handle Concussion in Toddlers?

Has your little child hit his head against a hard surface after falling from a height? Has he lost consciousness, appears dazed or is crying uncontrollably? Such conditions signify that your child has a concussion. A concussion refers to a brain injury, which occurs due to a blow to the head. It may result from a fall, a car crash or due to a sports injury. Toddlers are more prone to head injuries because of their curiosity and poor motor nerve skills. Most such injuries are harmless, but sometimes a fatal blow to the head might lead to severe conditions. Immediate treatment and care are essential in such situations.

Diagnosis:

Several medical tests and examinations must be carried out for the diagnosis of a concussion. They include the following:

  1. Neurological exam is carried out to determine the functioning of your child's brain.
  2. X ray of the child's head has to be carried out in order to check for other injuries like fractures.
  3. A CT scan can be performed where the child has to intake a dye before having an X ray done. This will provide better pictures.
  4. An MRI scan can be performed for diagnosis as well where powerful magnets, and a computer are used to take pictures of the child's head and blood vessels.

Treatment and Management of a Concussion:

Usually, no special treatment is required to treat concussion in a toddler. A doctor may have to be consulted, and the child may have to spend some time in the hospital. Several medicines are prescribed by the doctor for the child in order to provide pain relief.
There are several ways which you need to follow in order to manage the symptoms of a concussion in your child. They are as follows:

  1. Ice: Ice provides relief from pain and reduces swelling in head injuries. Ice also helps in preventing tissue damage. You should use an ice pack, cover it with a towel and apply it to the injured area on your child's head.
  2. Rest: Right after a concussion, your child must be put to rest in bed for at least twenty-four hours. Eventually, he can get back to being active as he feels better.
  3. Restriction on activities: Your child should not take part in sports or any activity, which may result in a fatal blow to his head. Having another concussion before the brain recovers from the previous one can be fatal.

In cases where your child experiences nausea and vomiting, intense headaches and passes out, you need to rush him to the hospital. You must consult a doctor when the symptoms keep on worsening and continue for several weeks. Without a proper treatment, your child may develop post concussion syndromes, such as headaches, depression or short-term memory loss.

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