Advanced Concussion Treatment for Post Concussion Symptoms - Neck Pain and Visual Issues

Neck Pain and Visual Issues with Concussions

In the second part of this series, we examine neck pain and visual issues associated with concussions. Neck and cervical spine issues are the more obvious and readily treated components of post concussion rehabilitation. After trauma to the neck and head, muscles in the neck tighten and the vertebrae stiffen. This causes difficulty with neck movement and oftentimes the pain and tightness transfers up to the head which can result in headaches. Treatment is similar to muscular neck injuries with soft tissue mobilization, joint mobility and neck stretches, as well as exercises to restore the neck back to normal function.

Visual issues post concussion are the most commonly missed or ignored symptoms when it comes to rehabilitation. You may have heard of bright lights or screens affecting someone after a concussion, but there are other types of visual issues they can face as well.

Vision accounts for 80% of the input data the brain uses to keep ourselves balanced and level. Therefore, when either the eyes themselves or the pathway from our eyes to our brain gets altered, symptoms such as dizziness, instability, and nausea can occur. In order to recover from visual issues we need to re-train the eyes. This type of eye training includes tracking objects as they move around, rapidly looking from one object to another, changing from near focus to far focus, and looking with our peripheral vision.

Some concussion sufferers may have tunnel vision while others may be unable to focus on a singular point without feeling sick – everyone is different. Similarly with balance training we can add changes to our other senses to create more difficulty such as adding balance components or cognitive load.

If you’ve experienced a concussion in the past and are experiencing concussion symptoms, book an appointment with us or visit our Port Credit Physiotherapy clinic to see how we can help.

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