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You don't have to be knocked unconscious or even hit your head to experience a mild traumatic brain injury that can have serious results.


Emergency Signs in Adults

If you have any of these symptoms, call 9-1-1 or go to a hospital emergency room immediately:

  • Loss of consciousness, even for just a few seconds
  • Seizures
  • Confusion (not knowing the date, time or location)
  • Bleeding from the ears, mouth, nose
  • Slurred speech
  • Loss of coordination
  • Weakness or numbness of arms, legs or face
  • Repeated vomiting six or more hours after the injury occurred
  • Cannot be woken easily after falling asleep
  • One pupil larger than the other or no change in pupil size with light

Emergency Signs in Children

If your child has any of these symptoms, call 9-1-1 or take the child to a hospital emergency room immediately:

  • Crankiness or continual crying
  • Cannot be calmed (especially with infants)
  • Will not nurse or eat
  • Change in play habits; loss of interest in favorite foods or toys
  • Loss of balance
  • Loss of newly acquired skills such as toilet training, walking or language

Ongoing Signs & Symptoms

Sometimes, you may not experience any of the immediate emergency symptoms of a MTBI, but you may notice subtle changes in your health or behavior. If you are experiencing these symptoms beyond seven days after the incident and these were not present before your injury, you should call your doctor:

  • Slowness in thinking, acting, speaking, reading or reacting
  • Getting lost or easily confused
  • Trouble concentrating, organizing daily tasks or making decisions
  • Increased sensitivity sound, light, distractions
  • Low-grade headaches that will not go away
  • Neck pain
  • Loss of balance, feeling light-headed or dizzy
  • Blurred or double vision, or eyes that tire easily
  • Ringing in the ears
  • Fatigue
  • Change in sleeping patterns, including insomnia or trouble waking up
  • Changes in mood, including anxiety, sadness or anger
  • Drastic change in sexual drive
  • Loss of one or more senses (taste, smell, hearing)

Learn More

Parker Adventist Hospital has a program to treat minor head injuries. Patients who are suspected of having minor head injuries are followed closely by a therapist specially trained in cognitive therapy. The therapist checks for symptoms such as forgetfulness, inability to concentrate, irritability or depression. If the patient exhibits any symptoms, the therapist works with the patient's physician to design a rehabilitation program. To learn more about minor head injuries, call the Parker Adventist Center for Rehabilitation & Sports Medicine at 303-269-4590.

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