Sports and brain injuries

Bryan is a healthy, active eleven year old that loves sports of every kind. His mother, worried about all the recent news about football-related concussions, was relieved when Bryan chose to attend basketball camp rather than football camp this summer. Despite the seemingly safer choice, Bryan showed the classic signs of a closed head injury (brain trauma) after colliding head-to-head with another basketball player.

Would you know what to look for if your child sustained a closed head injury? It’s a fair question, according to INDY Neurofeedback owner Leanne O’Neil, “Especially since mild to moderate closed head injuries (in children and adults) often get misdiagnosed as something else.”

Contrary to popular opinion, you do not have to lose consciousness to have a serious brain injury. And even mild brain injuries (life’s head bumps) can have a lasting impact on brain function — and people’s lives. In fact, current research suggests that many cases of ADHD, epilepsy, hyperactivity, and/or aggressive behaviors are the result of undiagnosed head trauma.

Here are signs of a closed head injury:

  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Poor concentration
  • Poor memory
  • Poor organization and/or planning
  • Mood swings
  • Insomnia
  • Irritability
  • Aggression
  • Poor hearing
  • Slurred speech
  • Depression and/or anxiety

A quick look at the list makes it obvious why these types of injuries get misdiagnosed or undiagnosed. After all, what typical eleven year old doesn’t have occasional poor organization skills, irritability, mood swings or anxiety?

“Head injuries look different depending on the person and the type of trauma sustained,” says O’Neil. “Although the brain is incredibly resilient, it is also quite delicate, so almost any kind of blow can cause the brain to dysregulate. Through a qEEG brain map, INDY Neurofeedback can confirm the existence of dysregulated brainwave patterns and begin to provide training on how to correct the patterns.”

Restoring the brain’s normal rhythms can restore normal functioning health and behaviors. It is a completely non-invasive and drug-free approach to optimal brain functioning.

– the INDY Neurofeedback team

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