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Concussions

Concussions have become a big deal in the past few years. So what's all this talk about? Why are they so concerning? What can it mean for your child? Here's some info to help cover the basics. For more please visit the CDC concussion info page. If your child has an injury at school or while involved in BCPS activities he/she may be assessed by the school nurse or athletic trainer for a possible concussion. The nurse or trainer can then recommend follow up as needed. A doctor, physician's assistant (PA), or nurse practitioner (NP) must diagnose your child with a concussion- the school nurse and/or athletic trainer cannot make a formal diagnosis. If your student is diagnosed with a concussion, the care provider will often recommend restrictions and accommodations to school work and athletics to allow the brain the time and rest it needs to heal. Follow up with the care provider is necessary to assess your child's recovery progress and to maintain the recommended accommodations. If your child plays sports for BCPS he/she cannot return to play until fully cleared by a care provider from all academic/classroom accommodations and is given the "OK" to begin Return to Play protocol with the athletic trainer. 

Why are we taking concussions so seriously now?

 

  • Students who have 2 or more concussions have lower average GPAs
  • After the 1st concussion, it takes less of an injury to cause another
  • Potential for post-concussion syndrome: ongoing headaches, nausea/vomiting, difficulty concentrating, and change in personality
  • Multiple concussions, over a period of years, can add up to Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy: loss of memory and cognitive function, aggression, depression, suicidal behavior, poor impulse control and dementia

What is a concussion?


According to the CDC: A concussion is a type of traumatic brain injury—or TBI—caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head or by a hit to the body that causes the head and brain to move rapidly back and forth. This sudden movement can cause the brain to bounce around or twist in the skull, creating chemical changes in the brain and sometimes stretching and damaging brain cells.

What symptoms will my child have if he/she has a concussion?
  • Headache or head “pressure”
  • Nausea and/or vomiting
  • Problems with balance, dizziness
  • Double or blurry vision
  • Bothered by light and/or noise
  • Feeling sluggish, hazy, foggy, groggy, or slow
  • Confusion, trouble concentrating and remembering things
  • A “something isn’t right” feeling
  • Feeling “down”
What will I notice if my child has a concussion?
  • Cannot remember event before or after the injury
  • Appears/acts dazed or stunned
  • Forgets instructions or is confused about usual assignment
  • Appears clumsy
  • Responds slowly
  • Loss of consciousness (passing out)
  • Mood/behavior/personality changes

How do I help my child recover if he/she is diagnosed with a concussion?

  • Cognitive rest- limit the stress and strain put on the brain. This may include limiting homework and classwork. This must be done based on the recommendations of a doctor, PA, or NP and is not at the discretion of the parent or school nurse. This is one reason that good follow up with a professional medical care provider is so important. 
  • Sleep
  • No contact sports
  • Limit activities that could lead to head re-injury
  • Limit screen time (including TV, computer, video games, and cell phones)
  • Keep him/her hydrated 




Sick Days Reminder


Please remember that if your child has had an episode of vomiting or diarrhea, or has had a fever in the past 24 hours they should remain home from school. This protects other students and staff but also protects your child. People are often contagious before they show symptoms. If your child is sick he/she does not need to be exposed to more illness while they recover. Please consider making a doctor's appointment for your child if you are suspicious that he/she may have the flu, or if you are concerned about dehydration. 

As always- please contact the nurse if you have any questions or concerns. I am in the clinic from 8:30am - 4:00pm on school days. I can be reached at 540-297-7151.


Thanks for helping keep our community healthy!
Jessica Haefer, R.N., B.S.N.


Healthy Snack List BCPS 2017.docx
Human Papillomavirus (HPV) Vaccine Information for Parents


Clinic Forms


Click Here for School Entrance Health Form Instructions


Click here for School Entrance Physical Exam Form

Click here for school immunization requirements

Click here for the medication administration permission form

Click here for the Non-Aspirin pain reliever form

 

 



The BCPS nurses are excited to receive Grant Funding from the 
Bedford Community Health Foundation to move the school clinics into the digital age.  A BIG thank you to the Foundation Board for recognizing and supporting this need. Watch for more information to follow as we connect to CAREDOX for our Electronic Medical Records in the school clinics. As a parent you will have an active role in this process to allow for a quicker easier way of communicating your child's health information.  


            

 

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