TABLE 1

Signs and Symptoms of a Concussion and the Potential Problems They May Pose to the Student

Sign/SymptomPotential Implications in School
HeadacheMost common symptom reported in concussions
Can distract the student from concentration
Can vary throughout the day and may be triggered by various exposures, such as fluorescent lighting, loud noises, and focusing on tasks
Dizziness/lightheadednessMay be an indication of injury to vestibular system
May make standing quickly or walking in crowded environment challenging
Often provoked by visual stimulus (rapid movements, videos, etc)
Visual symptoms: light sensitivity, double vision, blurry visionTroubles with various aspects of the school building
 Slide presentations
 Movies
 Smart boards
 Computers
 Handheld computers (tablets)
 Artificial lighting
Difficulty reading and copying
Difficulty paying attention to visual tasks
Noise sensitivityTroubles with various aspects of the school building
 Lunchroom
 Shop classes
 Music classes (band/choir)
 Physical education classes
 Hallways
 Organized sports practices
Difficulty concentrating or rememberingChallenges learning new tasks and comprehending new materials
Difficulty with recalling and applying previously learned material
Lack of focus in the classroom
Troubles with test taking
Troubles with standardized testing
Reduced ability to take drivers education classes safely
Sleep disturbancesExcessive fatigue can hamper memory for new or past learning or ability to attend and focus
Insufficient sleep can lead to tardiness or excessive absences
Difficulty getting to sleep or frequent waking at night may lead to sleeping in class
Excessive napping due to fatigue may lead to further disruptions of the sleep cycle