Supporting someone who has sustained a concussion requires understanding, patience, and proactive involvement. Here’s how you can be of assistance:
Educate Yourself: Understand the symptoms and effects of a concussion so you can empathize and identify any concerning changes.
Ensure Rest: Encourage the individual to rest both physically and cognitively. This might involve limiting screen time, avoiding strenuous activities, or reducing exposure to loud noises and bright lights.
Attend Appointments: Accompany them to medical appointments if they’re comfortable. This not only provides moral support but also ensures they have someone to help remember medical advice or ask pertinent questions.
Monitor Symptoms: Help them track their symptoms, especially if they have difficulty remembering or are reluctant to admit ongoing problems.
Provide Emotional Support: Recognize that emotional and behavioral changes might occur. Offer a listening ear, patience, and encouragement.
Assist with Tasks: Offer help with day-to-day tasks, especially if they’re struggling with things like driving, cooking, or even personal care.
Stay Informed: If they’re an athlete or student, know the protocols for return-to-play and return-to-learn, ensuring they don’t rush back and exacerbate their symptoms.
Encourage Communication: Urge them to communicate any ongoing or new symptoms to healthcare providers, ensuring they get the necessary care.
Create a Supportive Environment: Reduce sensory stimuli in their environment. This can include dimming lights or reducing ambient noise.
By being there for someone with a concussion, offering both practical and emotional support, you can play a significant role in their recovery process.