What Causes a Concussion?

Your brain consists of soft matter surrounded by cerebrospinal fluid which serves to act as a cushiony barrier between your brain and the hard bone of your skull. A concussion occurs when your brain bounces or twists inside your skull or experiences rapid, whiplash-type back and forth movement that causes it to collide with the inside of your skull. This brain movement stretches and damages brain cells and leads to chemical changes in the brain.

-Causes-

Falls

Falling down the stairs, slipping on a wet floor, missing a chair can all cause concussion even if you did not hit your head.

Blow to the Head

Being struck with an object or fist, hitting your head on any surface (low hanging pipes for instance), or hitting your head on the floor can lead to concussions.

Car Accidents

The force of hitting your head on the airbag, steering wheel  or window can cause significant brain trauma.

Acceleration

Any sharp movement such as whiplash where you may not hit your head can causes your brain to concuss inside your skull.

Sports injuries

Not only contact sports, but non contact as well. Getting thrown on the ground or headbutting a ball can all lead to injury.

Bodily Assault

An abrupt movement of the body in one direction, can cause the brain to hit your skull in the opposing direction. This can come from tackling during sports, or even explosions and blasts during combat.

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The force of a hit can cause a concussion on the part of the brain that was directly hit or on the opposite side of the brain (as the brain tissue itself moves from the force of the blow and hits the opposite side of the skull).

Different areas of the brain control different functions, so blows to your head can predict your symptoms. A concussion to the back of the brain causes balance issues, fogginess, neck pain and difficulty concentrating. These symptoms usually predict a longer recovery from a concussion.

Multiple factors contribute to decreased cognitive functioning including shearing of the sphenoid bone, bruising to the brain, and hormone dysfunction secondary to shearing of the pituitary gland.