A student’s best chance of full recovery from a concussion involves two critical components: cognitive and physical rest. Continued research has focused on the fact that cognitive rest is essential to the quick resolution of concussion symptoms. Cognitive stimulation includes: driving, video games, computers, cell phone use, loud or bright environments, TV, reading and studying; these MUST be limited and in most cases, completely avoided. Physical activities such as PE, sports activities, and strength or cardiovascular conditioning must be regulated or avoided while recovering from a concussion.
Points of Emphasis and Parent Responsibilities:
- It is important to note that recovery from a concussion is a very individualized process. Caution must be taken not to compare students with concussions as they progress through the recovery process. The information below is provided as a guide to assist with concussion recovery.
- It is recommended that students who are experiencing concussion-like symptoms be examined by a healthcare professional.
- Students may start at any phase in the Return to Learn as symptoms dictate and/or as recommended by a healthcare provider.
- It is important to allow complete brain recovery before returning to mental activities.
- Once documentation is provided to the school (health office) that a student has a concussion, the Return to Learn protocol will be initiated.
- For every day the student is within Phases 1-3, they will be granted the same number of days to complete missed academic work.
- Classroom accommodations will be made based on the student’s symptoms. These could include breaks, assignment modifications, working in a quiet environment, etc. Accommodations are reduced or eliminated as symptoms resolve.
- If symptoms worsen at any phase, stop activity, rest and notify health office staff. Return to previous phase if symptoms worsen.
- Students can remain at any phase as long as needed.
- Symptom free means NO lingering headaches, sensitivity to light/noise, fogginess, drowsiness, difficulty concentrating, etc.
- It is important that once the student has returned to school that they report to the Health Office daily in order to monitor symptoms as well as to determine progression to the next phase within the Return to Learn protocol.
- Keep brain activity below the level that causes worsening of symptoms (e.g. headache, tiredness, irritability).
- Students are encouraged to meet with counselors and teachers regularly to discuss progress, grades, and status of make-up work.