If you think you understand concussions well enough, you are probably wrong. Unfortunately, I myself [author Jennie Shulkin] am overly informed. By sharing my own experiences with TBI, I hope to educate others on its potential graveness, as well as eradicate certain concussion misconceptions.
1. A minor impact cannot cause a concussion. My major concussion resulted from being struck in the head by a volleyball. Yes, a volleyball. I learned the hard way that there is no relationship between the severity of the collision and the magnitude of the resulting concussion.
2. A concussion can only occur in conjunction with loss of consciousness. Unlike in the movies, I remained alert and awake following my accident. Because of this, nobody around me even asked if I was okay. Despite common belief, most concussion sufferers never lose consciousness and are therefore not given immediate medical attention.
3. Symptoms cease after a short period of rest. One head injury may heal in a few days, but another may last several months or longer. My own concussion persisted for three grueling months — one of which I was completely inactive, and two of which I fought through the pain and confusion to continue my life.
The Everyday Reality of TBI…