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A concussion is a type of mild traumatic brain injury or mild TBI. It happens when a blow to the head Black girl in Amherst an injury makes the head move back and forth with a lot of force. This causes chemical changes in the brain and, sometimes, damage to the brain cells. Teens who follow their health care provider's recommendations usually feel better within a few weeks of the concussion.

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A blow to the head can be scary.

Usually, the injury is not severe. But sometimes there can be a concussion, bleeding on the brain, or cracks to the skull. It is important for the doctor to examine you or your child for a possible concussion or another injury.


A blow to the head can cause a brain injury. The doctor may order a brain scan to make sure you do not have a fractured skull or a serious brain injury. But these scans are usually not needed.

A CT scan takes pictures to create images of the brain. An MRI creates clear images of brain tissue.

Should you worry about minor head injuries?

But these scans cannot show if you have a concussion. A concussion is different from a fracture or bleeding. A concussion affects how your brain works, and most people recover within a few weeks.

CT scans use radiation, which can increase your risk of cancer. Children, and especially infants, have more risks because their brains are developing.

Young children may need sedative drugs so they lie still for a scan. These drugs have risks. And imaging test are sometimes unclear.

This can lead to more tests and visits to a specialist. If your are not clear, you may have to pay for extra tests and doctor visits.

A CT scan is usually the best first test to use if the doctor thinks you have a skull fracture or bleeding in the brain. Your doctor should look for symptoms and ask about the accident. An MRI may be helpful if your symptoms continue for 48 hours or more after the injury, or if your symptoms get worse.

Brain scans for head injuries

This report is for you to use when talking with your health-care provider. It is not a substitute for medical advice and treatment.

Use of this report is at your own risk. Continue the Conversation.