Post-Concussion Recovery

Have you had a concussion? You may have and didn’t even realize it. The definition of being concussed has broadened in recent years as more studies have been done on athletes in contact sports and military personnel injured in battle. The Mayo Clinic’s definition adds that apart from a blow to the head, a concussion can occur when the upper body and head have been violently shaken. Because most concussions do not result in a loss of consciousness, many people are unaware or do not believe that they have been concussed. Whiplash, as occurs when one’s head, neck and back is whipped around in a motor vehicle accident, can cause a concussion even if the head never impacts anything solid.

The cumulative effects of physical trauma can also take their toll. Take whiplash, add a bad tumble down a ski hill, mix in a hard slam to the head on the corner of an open cabinet door and you have the perfect recipe for vertigo, headaches, memory loss, neck pain, irritability, and digestive problems, leaving a person wondering why they are falling apart.

A study done with collegiate football players shows that the effects of concussions can be cumulative and slow recovery. Another study shows that amateur athletes who had suffered multiple concussions were 7.7 times more likely to experience a major drop in memory function than athletes who had never been concussed. But why this cumulative effect?

Osteopathy, the foundation of CranioSacral Therapy, explains that the shock of a hard hit to the physical body is not localized to the point of impact. The force of the hit sends shock waves through the body where they bounce off of bones and dense internal organs, and are absorbed by fascia and soft tissue. This includes the dura, the membrane that supports our gelatinous brain in our skull and protects our spinal cord. Absorbed shock wave = restriction in the tissue = loss of mobility = pain. With every physical trauma these restrictions hook on to existing restrictions like Velcro and can remain until treated and released by gentle manual therapies.

The Upledger Institute has done groundbreaking work treating ex-NFL players with post-concussion syndrome. For one week multiple therapists trained in CranioSacral Therapy and Visceral and Neural Manipulation teamed up on daily treatment sessions with the ex-“footballers.” The results were profound, relieving many of these men of chronic pain with which they had suffered for years, sometimes decades.

Do yourself and everyone around you a favor and don’t let a concussion go untreated. Find a CranioSacral Therapist in your area using this search engine. If you are in Boise, ID please visit my web site to book a session or contact me at Thanks for reading!