Newbie: Hey guys my name is Brooklyn I’m 19 I was... - Headway

Headway

8,096 members10,525 posts

Newbie

BWRacing22
BWRacing22

Hey guys my name is Brooklyn I’m 19 I was diagnosed with mTBI/ post concussion syndrome after an accident on the 11th.

I’m still getting bad headaches after 10 days and also have poor short term memory and a speech issue like I forget what I’m trying to say mid sentence then stutter is this common ?

The doctor In A&E said if my symptoms persist or worsen I should go back it’s mainly the headaches they aren’t as bad as they were but they’ve changed, the whole right side of my head and face hurts to (6/7 out of 10) as a pose to intense pressure and pain front and back which is what they were like a few days ago.

Paracetamol isn’t doing anything for them but I’m not sure if this is all part of the process or something that needs checking again?

I have a high pain threshold so If I take painkillers that means I’m in pain.

Hope that I can find a few things out and make some friends. Also should add I have cerebral palsy caused by premature birth but all the symptoms I’m having are from the injury rather than that 🙂

29 Replies
oldestnewest

Hi Brooklyn and welcome. Your symptoms do sound like classic concussion, but it's a common misconception that concussion is a short term issue. PCS can be hard to shake off but rest, adequate sleep and staying well hydrated can help the healing process. Alcohol can aggravate the pain and slow down progress I'm afraid, and doesn't mix well with pain meds.

Symptoms can persist for weeks, months or longer and, as everyone's injury is unique, it's impossible to predict a timeline. If the pain isn't responding to Paracetamol (which isn't surprising) you should phone your GP for something more effective.......maybe Ibuprofen if it doesn't upset your stomach or CoCodamol.....or whatever your doctor recommends.

Don't worry too much just now about the memory/speech issue ; stressing about it will only make it worse. You're in the very early days of recovery and, at most, should be taking short walks to keep up fitness, eating healthily and drinking at least 1Ltr water each day (v. important).

Keep notes of activities, pain levels and your overall condition so you can look back and assess any improvement or worsening over the next couple of weeks.

For further reassurance, advice & information on PCS you could contact the headway helpline on freephone 0808 800 2244 where you'll talk to a member of their very approachable team.

Hope to see you around Brooklyn..... Cat x

BWRacing22
BWRacing22 in reply to cat3

Hey, Thankyou so much for your reply, before this happened I was doing marathons and 5K in my wheelchair but obviously I can’t do that at the moment as that’s strenuous exercise 😞

In terms of painkillers it’s tricky as I have gastro issues so some of them can flare that up.

It’s good to know that the speech and memory problems are common and should resolve themselves as they’re getting on my nerves just stuttering and things my speech is normally good.

The helpline what kind of things can I talk to them about?

Thankyou again cat

cat3
cat3 in reply to BWRacing22

You can talk about anything related to your PCS, how it affects you and what you can do to hasten your recovery. But remember that a brain injury can have varying degrees of lifelong effects, depending on the severity and area of trauma.

So you used a wheelchair even before your recent injury ? x

BWRacing22
BWRacing22 in reply to cat3

Yeah I’ve used the chair since I was 2 years old, I have cerebral palsy which is effectively brain damage from lack of oxygen at birth, it only affects my legs though so all the symptoms I have at the moment are totally unrelated.

cat3
cat3 in reply to BWRacing22

All the same, you've had to be extra-resilient throughout your life and still pretty dynamic !

It might be hard for you (as an action man) to rest up, but take care to respect the rules (as mentioned) of the healing process and hopefully you'll be back up to speed in the not too distant future....

See you later Brooklyn. x

BWRacing22
BWRacing22 in reply to cat3

Yeah that’s true the CP has taught me a lot in how to overcome things and stay strong, I’m trying my hardest to listen to my brain 🧠 Atleast lockdown is doing me a favour in terms of relaxing as I can’t do much but I’m also getting cabin fever 😂😂

cat3
cat3 in reply to BWRacing22

Nothing to stop you taking trips around the block Brooklyn.

It's boring by normal standards, but right now a regular change of scenery can be the difference between tearing your hair out and creating some feelgood hormones 😏 (something you should be familiar with from your racing).....but must be far less vigorous 'til you're fit again ! x

BWRacing22
BWRacing22 in reply to cat3

It’s a fine balance isn’t it x

Hi Brooklyn, like cat3 said try not to worry to much about the symptoms as they are all very usual for concussion 🤕 great idea to keep a kinda diary or schedule of what you have been doing day to day to see what triggers or makes them worse. I also highly recommend taking scheduled brain breaks - 10 mins every hour or so when you lay down and cover your eyes so blacked out . Really helps with fatigue 😀 I also have a scheduled rest time 12-1pm where I go lay in bed and have a sleep mask on and ear plugs in so brain gets complete silence and rest😀 I also love the website “love your brain” has some awesome resources and I am now doing yoga everyday which also is helping me heaps!! Anyway take care and rest really is the best medicine for ya brain 😀😀

Hi,

My son has CP as well also caused by coming out too soon at 6 months. Like yourself determined to get on with life.

As others have said, all the symptoms are quite normal. I guess you have looked up the symptoms on the internet and they never describe them as badly as when you experience them yourself.

The best thing is some mental rest for a while. Computer games and lots of screen time aren't the things to avoid and also stress.

The good thing is the younger you are, the better the recovery is, so hang on in there.

PS Impressed by marathons !

BWRacing22
BWRacing22 in reply to sospan

aww yeah I was 3 months early which caused my cp, I’m a very determined guy never let things stop me so as you can imagine the slow recovery of the tbi is quite literally doing my head in 😂

No exercise is annoying me because I want to get training but they told me that will increase the pressure so it’s a no go.

Yeah you’re right google and the head injury sheets didn’t accurately describe this I wasn’t really told what I was in for, the doctor did tell me to go to A&E if my headache wasn’t going away but I’m wondering if this is just part of the diagnosis, what are they likely to do if I go back?

Thanks

sospan
sospan in reply to BWRacing22

I was the same before my injury, even though my knees were damaged walked 7 miles a day, worked 100 hours a week, the whole life was hectic. Then had the head injury and told not so much slow down but stop !

Then coming from an analytic background, I couldn't work out why like most of my previous bone fractures my brain wouldn't heal as quick - as you say it does your head in.

The problem with concussion type injuries there is no treatment / cure as such. Which is what the doctors fail to tell people. Much like all organs there are two types of injury - the deep bruising and physical damage.

The deep bruising, (down to the bone, is something you will have experienced so many times. As you know it hurts like **** and sometimes there is no bruise or mark for weeks. It is the same with the brain. A severe bang on the head results in a deep bruise which again takes a long time to heal. Quite often doctors will request an MRI to detect. However, many MRI machines aren't detailed enough to detect brain bruising/damage and neither are most Neurologists!

Actual brain damage is quite interesting. If there actual physical damage, the brain is clever enough to develop new routes around the damage so it can continue. However this "plasticity" as it is called is mainly undertaken while resting - hence the idea of easy off for a while. The good news for you is that the younger you are, the better the brain plasticity is !

What GP's offer is low dose Amitriptyline / gabapentin which do two things, slow the brain down to take the load off to aid plasticity and secondly to improve the effectiveness of pain killers. However, what they do (deliberately) is increase the sensation of sluggishness and confusion. So I would suggest avoiding them unless desperate.

Whilst strength building exercises which cause impacts should be avoided, I would keep up with stretches and things to keep you flexible and not seize up !

BWRacing22
BWRacing22 in reply to sospan

That makes so much sense, they told me there was internal bruising to my brain because it bounced around in the impact.

It all makes sense when I read what you’ve written 🙂

It’s the small things that have annoyed me the most such as the tinitus memory and speech problems, I mean don’t get me wrong these headaches are very painful like atleast 6 or 7 outta 10 if not more!

They gave me morphine in hospital which worked a treat compared to the paracetamol but it’s addictive and personally I don’t fancy that long term.

I’ll try and do some resistance stuff in the meantime to take my mind off the symptoms.

sospan
sospan in reply to BWRacing22

I have tinnitus, the severity changes depending on how tired I am. Normally, there is so much commotion around me that it doesn't bother me so much.

Speech and word finding can be quite a problem, I had to learn to pace myself to get the words out.

When I broke my neck, the hospital gave me this one tablet. It was the best thing ever. Within a few minutes, I was up and could have run through a brick wall without a problem. Never found out what it was and wasn't put on my medical records!

Have a google of "lignocaine patches" they can be used to treat headaches and migraines but what may be of interest is that they work at the soft tissue level so may help with the CP stiffness. They don't seem to have many reactions especially if you have gastro problems.

After a car collision in 2019, I needed surgery to repair the damage. Up until a few weeks ago, i was in significant pain and couldn't walk. It was getting to the point where I was looking at mobility scooters. My GP prescribed morphine patches but like you I didn't want to go down that route. Instead he suggested some lignocaine patches. Put them on and after 3 - 4 days, I was walking pain free. We surmise that as well as the meniscus tear, I had a trapped nerve. The lignocaine had reduced the inflammation enough to get the nerve moving. The difference is remarkable.

BWRacing22
BWRacing22 in reply to sospan

Ahh yeah I never had tinitus before this so it’s definitely an effect of the TBI, I’ve been trying to drown it out recently but it’s a cycle I listen to Music and then I end up getting worse pain because my ears are sensitive to noise since this happened.

I am also having trouble finding the words i used to be quite a fast talker so this is different for me, I often find myself stuttering in the middle of a sentence because I can’t find the words which is very annoying but I’ll get there I just need to slow down a bit like you said.

I will look at those patches they sound great.

I’m guessing there is no timeline on recovery as everybody is different it hasn’t even been two weeks since the RTC yet !

sospan
sospan in reply to BWRacing22

2 weeks - really are a "newbie" 😀

BWRacing22
BWRacing22 in reply to sospan

Yeah the accident happened on the 11/11/2020 so it’s all new to me, never been in an accident before and we were stationary so a matter of wrong place wrong time 😵 I think it’s easy to worry about symptoms that aren’t going away early on...

I found the headspace website then came on here and I’ve learnt a lot over night 🙂

sospan
sospan in reply to BWRacing22

Car collision ?

BWRacing22
BWRacing22 in reply to sospan

Yep 👍🏻 we were sitting there and a car came at speed into the back of us

sospan
sospan in reply to BWRacing22

Same thing happened to my wife last year - Friday 13th December! A supermarket home delivery vehicle hit her from behind and knocked the car 94 feet down the road.

At the time she was stopped at the roundabout waiting to enter, the driver said he didn't see her. Massive whiplash concussion and lost the peripheral vision in both eyes.

She was also in the passenger seat in April last year when a guy having an "off day" decided to deliberately ram the van I was driving.

Quite often the worse injuries are when you aren't expecting them and can't prepare for the impact.

BWRacing22
BWRacing22 in reply to sospan

Yeah we got hit into another car aswell, the car was Written off, the chassis was completely snapped, think this guy was looking at his phone, I hit my head very hard and as soon as the car stopped I knew I’d hit it bad.

sospan
sospan in reply to BWRacing22

Yep, it is surprising how life can change in an instant and quite often not from your own doing.

At least your here to discuss it, down to the solicitors now - I would advise against anyone provided by the car insurers

BWRacing22
BWRacing22 in reply to sospan

Yeah I’m very Thankful there was no serious injuries as such, unfortunately that’s out of my hands as it’s my dads car so I’m just doing what he’s arranged.

It’s so crazy how thinks can change so quickly

Sorry to hear about your current difficulties. Welcome to a great community. I definitely agree with cat3 - call the Headway helpline. They will be able to give you exactly the right information and support.

Best wishes . 🙂🌸

BWRacing22
BWRacing22 in reply to Marnie22

Thankyou so much 🙂

Hi Brooklyn, I can pretty much echo what everyone else is saying here. You can ask the Headway helpline people anything - it's a relief to talk to someone that isn't surprised by your symptoms.

If you get a worse headache, go to A &E - they will probably do a CT scan (these are often clear even while you have symptoms, as are MRIs) but it's best to check. The same if you still have headaches at four weeks.

Best to steer off weights/ resistance work, my physio warned me off those, he said it would put pressure on my brain.

It's only two weeks for you, so you may well get improvements in your speech, every brain injury is different, but mine has improved - but I remember it felt really weird stopping mid sentence.

It's important to remember, unlike many other things - pushing through any symptoms makes things worse, and can slow up recovery. Resting and sleeping more is normal and helpful. But as Cat says, the equivalent of a short walk a day is a good thing. But cut down what you do until you can exercise, or watch TV or read without making any symptoms worse - then only increase the time spent on these without a break very gradually.

Taking rest breaks from everything - (sound, light, screens, movement) for ten- fifteen minutes every hour will probably help your headache - laying down flat seems to work better for me than sitting.

Experiment with the Headspace meditation app for breaks - works for some people, not others.

I found the Migraine Buddy app useful for tracking headaches - and providing 'evidence' for doctors - you can print or export your records by email. There's also a list of things to try which might ease your headache.

Amitryptline is a favourite drug for pain and sleep, the aim is to get away from paracetamol and ibuprofen, because long term use of these can actually give you headaches. Everyone reacts differently to different drugs, so it's important to find what suits you.

When you are concussed you are likely to find it difficult to exercise, it's a key symptom, but there are ways they are using in the States and here, working with athletes to gradually increase their exercise tolerance, rather than keep them resting for months. ( I'm no athlete - but the specialist sports physio I was referred to, put me through the same regime).

Rest up for now, and I hope things get easier for you - but talk to your GP, and on here anytime, and on the Headway phone line for support and ideas.

Jen 😊

Thankyou so much for this reply it’s really really helpful 🙂

The speech thing is weird as I have no control over it!

Migraine buddy has been downloaded thanks for the tip

Really glad to help - wish I'd found this forum at two weeks, or even two months! 😊👍 I just hated the speech thing - if it wasn't a dead stop, I just got weirdly slower and slower - at least that's gone away! Hang on in there - there's always someone to help you on here 🌸

Yeah it ranges from a full pause to a stutter like I can’t get the word out or I speak really slow 😂, I’ve been doing a lot of reading on all this stuff and it does say things can get worse before they get better, that’s definitely the case 🤕

You may also like...