November 2015

Concussions

Lately, we have heard a lot about the danger of concussions, especially among athletes. However, they can happen to anyone. Whenever we suffer a blow to the head, whether from a slip on the ice, a fall over our own two feet, or a football tackle, the sudden jolt of our brain against our skull can cause a concussion.
Many concussions are mild, and most people recover fairly quickly without any lingering effects. However, other times they can be much more serious. Confusion, amnesia (usually temporary), headaches, dizziness, and nausea are just a few of the symptoms that may occur. Difficulty concentrating, sleepiness, anxiety and nervousness may also appear, sometimes days or months after the initial injury. These can be long-lasting, especially if the person has already suffered a previous concussion.
Some symptoms require immediate medical attention. If the injured person has slurred speech, develops seizures, has a worsening or unrelenting headache and/or confusion, is unable to stay awake, and/or experiences repeated vomiting, weakness or numbness, he or she needs to be taken to a hospital right away. As with any brain injury, concussion needs to be taken seriously.
There are certain precautions you can take to protect yourself. Wearing seat belts in any moving vehicle, wearing helmets while bicycling, skateboarding, skiing, sledding, and playing contact sports, using child safety gates when needed, and removing tripping hazards around the home, especially for seniors, can decrease the occurrence of concussion.
Stay on top of your game; protect your brain.
The Scotch Plains Rescue Squad is a volunteer organization of Neighbors Helping Neighbors. With over 90 volunteers, we answer calls not only in Scotch Plains but in surrounding towns as well when needed. Besides answering calls, you will see our ambulances at many special events held in town, such as Scotch Plains Day, the Memorial Day Parade, high school football games, and the summer concerts on the Village Green. We are also available to provide demonstrations for Boys and Girls Scout troops, clubs, and any other group that may be interested in what we do. In addition, we lend out wheelchairs, crutches, canes and other assorted medical equipment free of charge. Please reach out to us if there is something we can do for you. scotchplainsrescuesquad@gmail.com or call (908) 322-2103 for non-emergencies.

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