Pediatricians Update Kid Concussion Guidelines

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For the first time in eight years, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has revised its concussion guidelines for kids and teens. These recommendations support light physical activity and the return to school and advise against avoiding electronics like televisions, smartphones, and computers during concussion recovery.

The docs’ group previously advised rest and restricting the use of electronics because of concerns that stimulation could impede the brain’s ability to recover following a concussion. However, according to the lead author of the AAP report, Mark Halstead, M.D., eliminating physical and cognitive activity actually worsens concussion symptoms in many kids and teens, and can also can lead to feelings of social isolation, anxiety, and depression.

Approximately 1 to 2 million children and adolescents are treated for recreational- and sports-related concussions each year, and the condition is probably underreported. If a concussion is suspected, a child (or adult) should immediately stop the activity and get medical attention. No two concussions are alike, and treatment, including a return to activity, should be decided on a case-by-case basis. Usually, there’s no need to avoid light exercise, such as walking, or miss prolonged periods of school after a concussion.

Sourced from: American Academy of Pediatrics