A concussion is a traumatic brain injury that occurs when a rapid movement of the head causes the brain to collide with the skull. This can either be caused by a direct hit to the head or by an indirect blow to the body that transmits a force to the head. Concussions can’t normally be seen by regular medical imaging tests such as CT scans and MRIs.

Always consult a healthcare provider if you suspect that you, your child or someone else with you has had a concussion. A concussion can sometimes be an emergency that requires urgent medical attention.

Signs and symptoms

Signs and symptoms can emerge immediately or in the hours or days following the injury and can be physical, cognitive, emotional/behavioural and/or related to sleep. These will typically last 1 to 4 weeks in children and youth but may last longer. Symptoms can include:

  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue or low energy
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Difficulty concentrating or remembering
  • Difficulty falling asleep

For more information on possible signs and symptoms, as well as recommendations on concussion management, visit the links below: