Are you or your child still struggling with effects of a concussion?
If you are, try not to worry because all isn't lost. Research tells us that the brain is "plastic", which means it can be retrained.
Symptoms like fatigue, brain fog, blurred vision, lack of concentration and headaches, are all warning signals that your brain uses to tell you that something isn't working properly.
In order to recover from the residual effects of a concussion you need to find what isn't functioning properly and train the area to work effectively again.
Once an area has been retrained, the symptoms associated with reduced functioning in that area go away.
There are 3 keys to making this happen:
1 - Finding the sub-optimally functioning area
2 - Training the area with enough volume to drive change
3 - Doing it a pace that your body can handle
Finding The Sub-Optimally Functioning Area
This is often the easiest part to do. There are lots of different areas in the brain that each have specific jobs to do.
So when an area of the brain / nervous system isn't working optimally it leaves fairly obvious clues.
For example, if you have an inability to focus, then it points to your frontal lobe, because this is the part of the brain that has the job of focusing on a specific task.
Or if you have ringing in your ears, it points to the part of the brain stem that contains the nerve for hearing and the temporal lobe, which is the part of the brain that processes sound.
In addition to the clues left by the symptoms you are experiencing, there are a series of functional assessments you can do for each part of the brain.
From the research we know that eye tracking is often affected by concussion. So an example of a functional assessment would be to test how smoothly your eyes can track a moving target.
Other examples would be testing how well you could smell, taste or hear things. It's kind of like a big puzzle.
Once the areas in need of improvement have been identified, you then have to train them to bring them back on line.
UNFORTUNATELY, THIS IS WHERE IT GETS A LITTLE TRICKY.
Training The Area Enough To Make Change AND in a way that your body can handle
In my opinion, this is where things tend to go wrong with a lot of concussion rehab programs.
There is a fine line between the amount of work someone needs and the amount their body can actually handle.
A lot of practitioners know how to assess the brain to identify underlying issues.
But the training recommendations that are given out are often far in excess of what the body can handle.
And very little focus seems to be given towards the brain's metabolic capacity. What I mean by this is that your brain needs fuel and activation in order to function.
Training exercises provide activation, but if you don't have an adequate fuel supply going to the area, the exercises can often make you feel worse.
And if every time you do an exercise you feel really bad, it's almost impossible to do enough work to get things to change.
And even if you were able to push on and do the work, it's unlikely that your system has the resources to actually create the plastic adaptions.
Sometimes this means spending a period of timing working to improve the brain's metabolic capacity, with things like breathing drills, before you directly train the dysfunctional areas.
Other times it could mean indirectly training the area before targeting them directly. An example of this would be doing a coordination exercise with your hands to create activity in the part of the brainstem that contains the nerves that control your eye muscles, rather than directly training your eyes.
There isn't a perfect solution or a set protocol, it's a case of starting with a game plan monitoring how your body responds, then adjusting your training accordingly.
A little Background on me
Hey my name is Richard Brice. I'm a personal trainer and kinesiologist. I started learning about the brain and concussion recovery to address some of my own health issues.
I struggled with pain for most of my younger life, and with fatigue and cognitive issues for most of my adult life. These issues were in large part caused by years of head trauma from heading the ball in soccer a series of concussions from soccer and mountain biking.
I'm happy to say that I've been able to rehab and overcome all my issues and get back to the point of living a happy health life.
I've also helped numerous other people to recover from concussions. Most of the people I've helped had already tired different type of therapy without success.
While you can never guarantee results with anything health related. I'm always confident that if people are willing to put in the work (and have a little patience), everyone can drastically improve how they feel.
If you would like help with your recovery, CLICK THE BUTTON BELOW & FILL OUT THE QUICK SURVEY to arrange a free strategy session.