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What to ask your doctor?

What to ask your doctor?

If your child has received a head injury, call their doctor. Depending on the signs and symptoms, the doctor may recommend seeking immediate medical care. While waiting to see the doctor, your child should rest as much as possible. This includes avoiding sports or other physical activities that increase heart rate or require vigorous muscle contractions. Also, abstain from activities that require focused attention — for example, working on the computer, watching TV, texting or playing video games.​
Here’s some information to help you get ready for and make the most of your medical appointment.​
· Ask if there are any steps you or your child should be following to immediately encourage
  recovery or prevent re-injury. Do not allow your child to return to play until they have been
   medically evaluated.
· List any symptoms you or your child have been experiencing, and for how long.​
· Write down key medical information, including other medical problems for which your child are
   being treated and any history of previous head injuries or illness. Provide the names of any
   medications, vitamins, supplements or other natural remedies your child is taking.​
· Go into the exam room with your child, if they usually see the doctor without you. Sometimes it
   can be difficult to soak up all the information provided if you have a concussion.​
· Write down questions to ask your doctor.​

For a concussion, some basic questions to ask your doctor include:​
· Is it a concussion?​
· What kinds of tests are needed?​
· What treatment do you recommend?​
· How long will it take before symptoms begin to improve?​
· What is the risk of future concussions?​
· What is the risk of long-term complications?​
· When will it be safe to return to competitive sports?​
· When will it be safe to resume vigorous exercise?​
· When can they return to school?​
· Is it safe to ride a bike/drive a car? (if they have their license.)​
· Should a specialist be consulted? What type of specialist? You may need to call your insurance 
   provider to see if you have medical coverage for this treatment.​
· Are there any brochures or other printed material that I can take home with me? What websites
   do you recommend?​

You and your child should be prepared to answer the following questions about the injury and related signs and symptoms:​
· How did you get this injury?
· Do you play contact sports?​
· What symptoms did you experience immediately after the injury?
​· Do you remember what happened right before and after the injury?
​· Did you lose consciousness after the injury?
· Did you have seizures?
· Have you experienced nausea or vomiting since the injury?
​· Have you had a headache? How soon after the injury did it start?
​· Have you noticed any difficulty with physical coordination since the injury?
​· Have you had any problems with memory or concentration since the injury?
· Have you noticed any sensitivity or problems with your vision and hearing?
​· Have you had any mood changes, including irritability, anxiety or depression?
​· Have you felt lethargic or easily fatigued since the injury?
​· Are you having trouble sleeping or waking from sleep?
​· Have you noticed changes in your sense of smell or taste?
· Do you have any dizziness or vertigo?
· What other signs or symptoms are you concerned about?
​· Have you had any previous head injuries?

Use this website, or contact Brain Injury Network of the Bay Area for more ideas on how to implement a program at your school site.

What to expect from your doctor.

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