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Concussions, a type of traumatic brain injury (TBI), are gaining significant attention due to their potential long-term effects and prevalence, especially among athletes. In New Jersey, as in many other states, the focus on concussion management has intensified, with physical therapy emerging as a crucial component of post-concussion care. Breakthru Physical Therapy takes a comprehensive approach to facilitate recovery and enhance patients’ quality of life.

What Exactly is a Concussion?

Physical Therapy After Concussions in New JerseyA concussion occurs when a blow to the head or body causes the brain to move rapidly within the skull, leading to chemical changes and sometimes damage to brain cells. Symptoms can vary widely, including headaches, dizziness, confusion, memory problems, and balance issues. While some individuals recover quickly, others may experience prolonged symptoms, known as post-concussion syndrome (PCS).

What is the Role of Physical Therapy?

Physical therapy plays a vital role in the multidisciplinary approach to concussion management. Physical therapists (PTs) in New Jersey are trained to address the diverse symptoms associated with concussions, using evidence-based techniques to promote recovery. The goal is to help patients regain their pre-injury level of function and prevent long-term complications.

The first step in physical therapy after a concussion is a thorough assessment. Breakthru physical therapists evaluate the patient’s symptoms, medical history, and functional limitations. This assessment includes tests for balance, coordination, vestibular function (inner ear balance), and cervical spine (neck) health, as concussions commonly affect these areas.

Based on the assessment, a customized treatment plan is developed. This plan is tailored to the individual’s specific needs and may include a combination of the following components:

  1. Vestibular Rehabilitation: Many concussion patients experience dizziness and balance issues due to vestibular dysfunction. Vestibular rehabilitation involves exercises to improve gaze stability, balance, and coordination.
  2.  Cervical Spine Therapy: Neck pain and stiffness are common after a concussion. Manual therapy, stretching, and strengthening exercises can address cervical spine issues, help reduce headaches, and improve overall mobility.
  3. Balance and Coordination Training: Balance problems are prevalent after a concussion. Physical therapists implement balance and coordination exercises to enhance stability and prevent falls.
  4. Aerobic Conditioning: Gradual reintroduction of aerobic activity is crucial for recovery. Breakthru therapists guide patients through a controlled and progressive exercise program, monitoring their response to ensure it does not exacerbate symptoms, improving cardiovascular fitness and reducing fatigue.
  5. Vision Therapy: Visual disturbances are another common issue post-concussion. Vision therapy includes exercises to improve eye tracking, focusing, and coordination.

The Importance of Education and Communication

At Breakthru Physical Therapy, we emphasize the power of education and communication. We provide patients and their families with essential information about concussions, expected recovery timelines, and symptom management strategies. Educating patients empowers them to actively participate in their recovery and adhere to treatment plans.

Effective communication among healthcare providers, including physical therapists, physicians, neurologists, and athletic trainers, ensures a coordinated approach to care, enhancing treatment effectiveness and supporting the patient’s overall well-being.

Start Recovering Today

Physical therapy is essential for post-concussion recovery. At Breakthru Physical Therapy, our dedicated team of professionals is committed to providing exceptional care to concussion patients, ensuring they receive the support and expertise needed to recover fully. If you or a loved one have experienced a concussion, contact us at 1-732-444-3578 or find a New Jersey location near you to learn more about our specialized programs and start your journey toward recovery today.

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