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Children with Concussion may Need a Break From School; AAP

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Oct 28, 2013 06:11 AM EDT
Teens
(Photo : REUTERS/Andy Clark/Files )

Children who've suffered a concussion must take a break from school, according to a new study.

Previous research on concussion has focused mainly on adults. Recently, a study by Matthew C. Wylie and team had reported that head injuries could increase the risk of depression in kids.

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Now, American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has released a report detailing the do's and don'ts of post-concussion-care in children.

Parents need to note that a 'head-bang' might not always lead to unconsciousness. A head injury may have other symptoms such as headache, dizziness, vomiting, pressure inside the head and confusion.

"Students appear physically normal after a concussion, so it may be difficult for teachers and administrators to understand the extent of the child's injuries and recognize the potential need for academic adjustments," said Mark Halstead,  lead author of the clinical report, according to a news release. "But we know that children who've had a concussion may have trouble learning new material and remembering what they've learned, and returning to academics may worsen concussion symptoms."

Previous research has shown that children recover from mild head injuries within three weeks. However, those who've had severe head injuries might have to stay back home for few days. Parents can send their children to school if the symptoms of concussion are tolerable. However, for unmanageable symptoms, the kids need to stay out of school for longer,

AAP recommends setting-up a team consisting of the kid's parents, pediatrician and people from school who can help the child cope with schoolwork after an injury. Also, healthcare providers can keep a check-list to track the kids' development post-concussion.

"Every concussion is unique and symptoms will vary from student to student, so managing a student's return to the classroom will require an individualized approach," said Dr. Halstead in a news release. "The goal is to minimize disruptions to the student's life and return the student to school as soon as possible, and as symptoms improve, to increase the student's social, mental and physical activities."

The report, "Returning to Learning Following a Concussion," was released Sunday, Oct. 27 at the AAP National Conference & Exhibition in Orlando.

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