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Integrative Family Health Clinic in Bolton and the Greater Caledon Area
4-22 Simona Drive
Bolton, ON
How to Treat a Concussion Wildflower Health and Wellness

How to Treat a Concussion

You’ve decided to allow your child to try out for the football team at school. You know that they will be provided with protective equipment so it must be safe. Yet, there’s a voice in the back of your head wondering if this might be a bad idea. After all, 3.8 million concussions get reported each year from sports and 70% of those reports are for children who incur the injury from recreational sports. Before you say yes or no to contact sports for your kids, let’s learn more about what concussions are and how to treat a concussion.

how to treat a concussion
photo courtesy of Ben Hershey

What is a Concussion?

A concussion is a type of Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) that occurs when the head is bumped or hit with intensity. As a result, the brain slams against the inside walls of the skull. The impact can cause brain cells to get damaged and result in long-term serious health issues.

Concussions commonly occur during competitive and recreational sports and physical activities. They are also common injuries from car accidents and other motor vehicle accidents. Any activity that puts your head at risk of being directly or indirectly hit, bumped, or jolted puts you at risk for a concussion.

What Are the Symptoms of a Concussion?

It’s a common misconception that concussions cause the sufferer to immediately fall unconscious. While this can happen, it certainly doesn’t happen in all cases. Each brain injury is unique and so are its symptoms.

Some of the most commonly reported symptoms include:

  • Pressure in the head and neck
  • Headaches and migraines
  • Blurred vision and dizziness
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Memory loss and fogginess
  • Sensitivity to light and sound
  • Difficulty concentrating

Parents and coaches must remember that a child does not have to lose consciousness when they suffer a concussion. They might display one or more of the symptoms above at the onset of the injury. More symptoms can develop over time.

When you witness a child or teenager suffer a head injury, pull them from the activity immediately. Regardless of how badly they may want to resume playing, it’s critical that their symptoms are investigated.

Engaging in physical activity while suffering from a concussion can cause further brain damage.

How to Treat a Concussion

The first step to treat a concussion is to get an official diagnosis from a doctor. They will ask the injured person questions about their symptoms. They may also run diagnostic CT scans of the brain.

In some cases, concussion symptoms resolve themselves. However, for some patients the symptoms remain present and debilitating for a long period of time.

The patient should not return to school, work, or play until they get the green light from their doctor. Until then, the doctor will likely recommend plenty of rest, sleep, and limited physical activities. As they see the patient begin to heal, they may permit gradual reintroduction to school and activities.

The doctor may also suggest that the patient sees an osteopathic manual practitioner. Osteopathic practitioners can help treat some of the symptoms of concussions like head and neck pain and nausea. An osteopath uses craniosacral therapy, fascia therapy and osteoarticular techniques to relieve pain and restore function.

At Wildflower Health and Wellness, our team of qualified and experienced osteopathic manual practitioners can aid in your concussion recovery. Contact us today to learn more.  

Graston Technique Wildflower Health and Wellness Osteopathy Pain Scar Tissue

Treating Scar Tissue with the Graston Technique

 

45% of all chronic diseases treated in hospitals are related to fibrosis or scar tissue. Fibrosis occurs when the body’s tissues get damaged, sometimes due to surgery, a disease, or injury. To fill in the tear or cut, thick, healthy tissue made of collagen cells gets created. Although scar tissue is part of the body’s natural regenerative process, it can cause other health issues.

If left unmanaged, scar tissue can restrict movement, cause nerve pain, cause numbness, and lead to joint contractures. To manage scar tissue and prevent these consequences, patients are recommended to see a physical therapist for manual massage therapy. This helps to remodel the scar tissue and realign all the collagen fibres.

 

What is the Graston Technique?

The Graston Technique is a highly effective method of manual therapy for scar tissue. It involves using a stainless-steel instrument that is specifically designed for this purpose. When used by a registered massage therapist or physical therapist, the Graston Technique can help remodel the scar tissue in a pain-free way.

Cross fibre massage for scar tissue is a well-known, evidence-based treatment. The Graston Technique allows the practitioner to gain a better sense where there is resistance in the tissue. They can use the tool’s edges and surfaces to gently massage the tissue from different angles.

Who is the Graston Technique for?

There are numerous conditions that the Graston Technique can help with. Combined with other treatments, it can treat carpal tunnel syndrome, fibromyalgia, tennis elbow, back pain, shin splints, and more. It’s commonly used to address post-surgery scarring, especially in women post-mastectomy or post-Cesarean.

However, it’s rarely a standalone treatment. Your practitioner will also likely use manual therapy with their hands as well as other forms of treatment depending on where your scar tissue is located.

What Happens During a Session?

When you book a scar tissue massage, your appointment will be similar to any other RMT session. You will consult with the practitioner on how your body has been feeling, where it’s sore, and the status of your scar tissue. It’s important not to massage any open scars or unhealed wounds.

Then, you will remove your clothing (if you wish) and lay on the massage table. In addition to traditional manual therapy of the muscles and tissues, the practitioner will use a stainless-steel tool for the Graston Technique. They will gently run the tool across your scar tissue, assessing its tightness and restriction. Cross fibre massage (with an instrument or just the practitioner’s hands) helps break up scar tissue.

How Effective is the Graston Technique?

The Graston Technique has been proven to be effective in breaking down collagen fibres and stretching fibrous tissues. Not only does it increase blood flow to the area, but it also reduces the amount of pain you feel in the area. It can reduce recovery time from injuries and decrease the amount of treatment you need, in addition to other benefits.

You can read more about the empirical and anecdotal evidence on the effectiveness of this treatment on the Graston Technique website.

Where Can I Receive Treatment with the Graston Technique?

Wildflower Health & Wellness is proud to offer registered massage therapy treatments which incorporate the Graston Technique. Our practitioners have completed the accredited Graston Technique training and are fully licensed to provide this service.

Simply call our clinic at 905-951-7134 or book an appointment online here.