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A concussion is a type of traumatic brain injury (TBI) caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head that can change the way your brain normally works. Concussions can also occur from a fall or a blow to the body that causes the head and brain to move quickly back and forth.

Even a “ding,” “getting your bell rung,” or a mild bump or blow to the head can be serious. Symptoms of a concussion can be physical, cognitive, emotional, or sleep-related.

Physical symptoms can include headache, nausea, vomiting, balance problems, dizziness, and sensitivity to light and noise.

Cognitive symptoms can include difficulty concentrating, memory problems, and confusion.

Emotional symptoms can include irritability, sadness, and nervousness. Sleep-related symptoms can include difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep.

It is essential to recognize the signs and symptoms of a concussion and seek medical attention if you suspect that you or someone else has a concussion. If a person has a concussion, it is essential to rest and avoid activities that could lead to another head injury. Following a doctor’s instructions for returning to activities is crucial.

A person with a concussion should not return to play or any activity that could lead to another head injury until a healthcare provider has cleared them.

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  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2020). Concussion. Retrieved from
  • Mayo Clinic. (2020). Concussion. Retrieved from