Head Injury, Adult

ExitCare ImageYou have had a head injury that does not appear serious at this time. A concussion is a state of changed mental ability, usually from a blow to the head. You should take clear liquids for the rest of the day and then resume your regular diet. You should not take sedatives or alcoholic beverages for as long as directed by your caregiver after discharge. After injuries such as yours, most problems occur within the first 24 hours.

SYMPTOMS

These minor symptoms may be experienced after discharge:

  • Memory difficulties.

  • Dizziness.

  • Headaches.

  • Double vision.

  • Hearing difficulties.

  • Depression.

  • Tiredness.

  • Weakness.

  • Difficulty with concentration.

If you experience any of these problems, you should not be alarmed. A concussion requires a few days for recovery. Many patients with head injuries frequently experience such symptoms. Usually, these problems disappear without medical care. If symptoms last for more than one day, notify your caregiver. See your caregiver sooner if symptoms are becoming worse rather than better.

HOME CARE INSTRUCTIONS

  • During the next 24 hours you must stay with someone who can watch you for the warning signs listed below.

Although it is unlikely that serious side effects will occur, you should be aware of signs and symptoms which may necessitate your return to this location. Side effects may occur up to 7 – 10 days following the injury. It is important for you to carefully monitor your condition and contact your caregiver or seek immediate medical attention if there is a change in your condition.

SEEK IMMEDIATE MEDICAL CARE IF:

  • There is confusion or drowsiness.

  • You can not awaken the injured person.

  • There is nausea (feeling sick to your stomach) or continued, forceful vomiting.

  • You notice dizziness or unsteadiness which is getting worse, or inability to walk.

  • You have convulsions or unconsciousness.

  • You experience severe, persistent headaches not relieved by over-the-counter or prescription medicines for pain. (Do not take aspirin as this impairs clotting abilities). Take other pain medications only as directed.

  • You can not use arms or legs normally.

  • There is clear or bloody discharge from the nose or ears.

MAKE SURE YOU:

  • Understand these instructions.

  • Will watch your condition.

  • Will get help right away if you are not doing well or get worse.