KDKA report: What parents need to know about concussions among young children

Photo above by Ben Hershey via Unsplash.

A new study from the University of Pittsburgh looked at concussions in younger kids and found that if kids get treatment for a concussion soon after the injury, their recovery was noticeably quicker.

Researchers looked at kids ages five to nine because there aren’t a lot of studies of concussions for kids that age. Using children from the Pittsburgh region, they found that kids were able to return to normal activities quicker if they started treatment sooner after their concussion, rather than waiting to see if symptoms improve on their own.

Dr. Alicia Trbovich, University of Pittsburgh neuropsychologist, led the study.

She explains that there are several common ways that younger kids sometimes sustain concussions, including trampoline injuries or injuries that happen during other kinds of recreation, and falling off of things. “Bikes, for example — they’re just learning to ride a bike,” Trbovich says.

But emergency rooms also do see a fair number of young kids who have sustained concussions during sports. “There’s even tackle football for 6-year-olds,” she says.

Recently, Trbovich says, concussion treatment has changed. Treatment now usually involves getting back to regular activity quickly, rather than avoiding it. She suggests kids who get concussions see a specialist rather than just their pediatrician for specific therapies to help them recover faster.

You can find concussion experts at this link.