Concussion Whitehorse, Yukon Territory


On television, injuries that turn out to be “just a concussion” are often anti-climactic events that the audience is led to believe will be over in days, if not hours. In real life, however, these minor traumatic brain injuries — which usually stem from a fall, sports, a car accident or a direct blow to the head — can severely impact a person’s quality of life from several days to months.
Left untreated, concussions can even inhibit growth in young children, and bring on early dementia for older patients. Fortunately, the physiotherapy field is continually discovering new ways to help patients suffering from both short and long-term concussion complications.

Concussion-Related Issues

Immediately after of a concussion, rest is the best way to cope with short-term symptoms such as fatigue, nausea, confusion, sensitivity to light and headaches. These symptoms will usually settle within 3-5 days, but if these problems persist and new ones arise, physiotherapy can be helpful.

Long-term symptoms can be quite varied, depending on the nature of your injury, as well as your age, gender and the number and severity of previous concussions. Some problems for which people seek PT for concussions include:

  • Fatigue
  • Ongoing headaches
  • Fogginess
  • Decreased ability to concentrate
  • Light and noise sensitivity
  • Irritability and mood changes
  • Loss of balance and frequent falls
  • Dizziness and lowered blood pressure
  • Anxiety and/ or depression

How physiotherapy can help

Physiotherapy can help you understand why you are having many of your symptoms and teach you how to manage them. An assessment will help determine the cause of your symptoms whether they are from your vestibular (balance) system, your ocular (vision) system, your sympathetic system and /or from your neck.

Being unable to return to work, school or sports can have a huge impact on a person’s overall wellbeing both physically and mentally. Physiotherapy can aid you with your return to work or school by helping you devise a gradual return that will minimize your symptoms. They will also help you understand how and when to safely return to sports and activity.

Occupational therapy may be also be helpful. Both your occupational therapist and physiotherapist will ascertain which daily routines have become challenging, and help you go through the steps of those routines, so that they don’t seem so overwhelming.

Headaches often come with the territory of recovering from concussions. To decrease their frequency, your PT sessions may include hands on techniques such as massage and mobilizations, specific stretches and strengthening , and even eye motion “workouts.”

Physiotherapy programs for concussion often build in vestibular therapy, which helps you orient yourself during periods of lightheadedness or loss of balance. (Exercises such as fixing your gaze at a certain point in the distance, or using simple movements to stabilize your core and limbs, are invaluable during such moments.)

When you or a loved one need help coping with the emotional and physical toll of a concussion, contact us at Whitehorse, Yukon center. We’ll tailor a recovery program to cope with, and eventually eradicate, these traumatic short and long-term symptoms.

PhysioPlus uses the SHIFT concussion assessment and management tool which looks at the individual as a whole and tails the rehabilitative strategies to the individual. We emphasize testing protocols that provide objective data from many different areas of physical performance (cognitive, visual, vestibular, neuromuscular, etc.) to aid in the development of individualized intervention strategies. 

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