Concussion

Concussion Management Program

Introduction

St. Charles Hospital's ThinkSMART!™ Concussion Management Program includes concussion education, baseline testing and concussion treatment services for student athletes and individuals who have sustained, or are at risk of concussion, a common but serious traumatic brain injury.

The program ties together St. Charles Hospital’s expertise in the prevention, evaluation, treatment and rehabilitation of traumatic brain injuries and utilizes cutting-edge neurocognitive technology to help ensure the safety and health of Long Island’s youth.

St. Charles established ThinkSMART!™ in August 2010 in response to an identified community health need. Today, more than 3,000 students are treated annually by ThinkSMART!™ physicians and more than 45 Long Island school district participate in the program.

For more information about the ThinkSMART!™ program or to make appointment at St. Charles Hospital's Concussion Managment Center, call (631) 474-6797. 

Headaches

Introduction

Headaches can be caused by many factors including:

• Muscle tension 
• Spasms in the muscles of the neck
• Muscle strain 
• Stress
• Injury

Symptoms often include pain or pressure on the sides, front or back of the head or aching pain in the temples or the back of the head and/or neck.

To aid in the prevention of headaches:

• Reduce stress
• Eat several nutritious meals and snacks throughout the day
• Remain properly hydrated (drink lots of water) 
• Exercise
• Practice good posture (standing and sitting) 
• Reduce eye strain when using a computer – take several breaks from close vision work throughout the day

For many, discovering and avoiding their headache triggers, whether environmental (allergens, bright lights, close vision work) or emotional (stress or tension), can significantly reduce the frequency and severity of chronic headache pain.

If headaches occur more than three times in a week, it is advisable to see a physician.

Whiplash

Introduction

Whiplash is the informal term used for neck sprain or neck strain. It occurs when the head is suddenly forced in one direction and then, just as suddenly, snapped back in the opposite direction (cervical acceleration-deceleration or CAD).

Such forced motion can cause a wide range of injuries including injury to the cervical discs, sprain of the muscles and ligaments in the neck and damage to the nerves. Whiplash most commonly occurs as a result of a car accident when an automobile is hit from behind but it can also occur in a fall and in contact sports. Symptoms of whiplash include pain and/or stiffness which are the result of muscle soreness due to the muscles bracing to protect the body.

Symptoms of whiplash can develop anywhere from hours to days after the injury was sustained and can last from three to six months. Symptoms include:

• Stiff neck
• Neck pain
• Muscle spasms
• Shoulder pain and/or stiffness
• Numbness or pain that extends down the arm or legs
• Decreased range of motion in the neck
• Headaches
• Fatigue 
• Blurred vision
• Dizziness

Whiplash is often diagnosed with the use of CT scan, MRI and X-Rays.

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