Dec 3rd, 2021

Concussions are the most commonly occurring traumatic brain injuries. (TBI), as per the CDC there are as many as 3.8 million sports and recreation related concussion every year in the United States alone. Concussions are a TBI that affects brain function, and although symptoms are usually temporary they can be quite severe. Concussions are known as diffuse primary brain injuries and are most commonly caused by a blow to the head, and less frequently caused by violent shaking of the head or upper body. By the cause of the brain being free floating in cerebrospinal fluid in the skull, when a blunt force hits the skull, the brain is accelerated and decelerated quickly causing it to collide with the inner skull.

Concussion symptoms typically reside after 24 hours, if they don’t this is known as post concussion syndrome. Symptoms are the same as concussion symptoms just persist longer- including, dizziness, nausea, lightheadedness, light and sound sensitivity, vision disturbances, headaches, irritability and poor memory.

A young athlete who visited us had suffered a Grade 2 Concussion just 5 days prior to coming in for treatment. This patient was elbowed in the temple and temporarily lost consciousness. During the week her symptoms persisted, this patient experienced ocular headaches that would come on in the afternoon daily, dizzy spells, blurred vision, nausea, and light sensitivity.

When she arrived at East to West Wellness Center she ranked her pain and discomfort as a 7/10. Just 24 hours later she expressed that the pain had reduced in intensity by nearly 50%. Acupuncture is excellent at treating post-concussion symptoms by relieving any physical tension in the neck that was causing any neck pain and headaches (thanks to acupuncture’s natural analgesic effects facilitated by cytokines), reducing inflammation, increasing blood flow to the brain to help rehabilitate the injured area and reducing severity of dizziness and nausea. In the first treatment we used electrical stimulation at the base of the skull, the specific frequency used releases an enzyme (nitric oxide synthase) that dilates blood vessels. 

-Anna Craddock, Student of Acupuncture

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