New Study Adds to Confusion Over Kids and Concussions

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With some doctors telling parents of kids who have had a concussion to rest and be inactive for a few days, other doctors telling them to put the child in a dark room for many days, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommending one or two days' inactivity, this latest study will only add to the confusion.

According to Dr. Danny Thomas of Children's Hospital of Wisconsin in Milwaukee and colleagues, too much rest might actually be counter-productive. Notably, they found that kids held at home for 48 hours and then slowly returning to activities did just as well in balance and mental function as kids held out for five days, and in fact those kids held for five days actually experienced more symptoms and much slower recovery times.

According to Thomas, who was quoted in Bloomberg News, telling children to rest for five days "didn't help them get better faster and it actually increased symptom reporting. I don't think it made their injury worse, it just made them more focused on it."

He added that while kids should listen to what their bodies are telling them and that they should never try to push through their symptoms, "no evidence [exists to support the idea] that stopping activities like watching movies or talking to friends will have a benefit."

Ultimately Thomas stressed the importance of kids slowly getting back to their daily routine as the most effective means of overcoming a concussion.

The teams' study involved 88 children and was published in the journal Pediatrics.

Source: Bloomberg

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