2nd Annual Pediatric Conference on Brain Injury in Austin, Sept 8

2nd Annual Pediatric Brain Injury Resource Fair & Conference – 9/8/18

TeamLuke/Hope4Minds and the Brain Injury Alliance of Texas have teamed up again to host a 2nd Annual Pediatric Conference in Austin this year.    I am so bummed that I will be out of town and cannot be there.

I attended the one last year and learned a great deal from the Speakers as well as from the many knowledgeable and caring providers of a variety of support services.  It was hosted at Dell Children’s Hospital yesterday and a huge introduction to the caliber of the thinking about the best for Children.  I still recall Dr Clarke’s admonition to “always take a “mild” neurological injury seriously”.  Especially Traumatic Brain Injury.  Traumatic Brain Injury includes concussion.  His phrase was such a powerful opposite to what most people think about concussion since they often infer like I did that a “mild” TBI means its not serious and will go away soon.   That does happen for many, but better to take it seriously and see if taking it seriously leads to full recovery with the help of good doctors and providers, than vice versa.  I wish my path to recovery had included an informed team from the beginning how could help me learn and also reinforce this message to me and those around me.  But I digress.

Here’s the link for the Conference.   I wasn’t sure if my new learning about how to get a link on my blog, but yahoo, I got it!   https://www.hope4minds.org/2nd-annual-pediatric-brain-injury-conference-9-8-18/

Look at all the different sponsors of pediatric brain injury services.   Also, look at the providers who are talking about positive neuroplasticity and how to encourage it in a growing brain.    If a doctor tells you there’s nothing we can do after concussion, or just rest and return to activity and you are noticing that your child still has symptoms–doing homework is different, they are more emotional or oppostitional than they were the day before, they cannot find things they normally do, or their eating is off, or just something is different, then find someone who can give you guidance.

I have more than a passing interest in children’s concussion.   I have taken a deep dive in to trying to get recovery for a concussion in my adult life.  I have succeeded in this journey but its taken a lot longer than I expected because finding knowledgeable doctors who know how to get you to the right services is not always easy with concussion.  You don’t know what you don’t know, and then because of the concussion, my communication and awareness skills weren’t working in my favor.   So I have a lot of history and knowledge about how not to take “no” for an answer.

And what I have learned about kids concussion, is that its not nearly the easier path that I expected!  Even given what I knew, I have still found it tough to navigate my son’s journey.    At the time of his first diagnosed concussion at age 6, there was little research for that age.   And yet, if a concussion isn’t resolved for the young children, then one faces the increased risk of another concussion and a snowball effect from there.

And don’t get me wrong, separating out what part of any change in behavior a child behavior is because of a concussion versus all the other things that a child goes through as a normal part of life is not easy. After my son’s concussion in the 24 hr period he was being watched for, he threw up.   Was it the fast food or the hit on the head?   With the doctor, Dr Bell, we concluded fast food.   After the second concussion, was it that he was acting out because he was mad at me or the doctor, or was he acting out because that was a symptom of the concussion?  With the Nurse Practioner at Sports Safe, Emily Woodward, we concluded symptom.

Fortunately, I have found knowledgeable and caring doctors for him and overall we have learned so much more about concussion through research that the best doctors knowledge has moved forward considerably.   We are still on our journey with him however so its a work in progress.

I am pleased to have heard yesterday that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have released guidelines on children’s Concussion in last couple of days based on a huge research effort.  You can take these guidelines to your doctor.

https://www.cdc.gov/traumaticbraininjury/PediatricmTBIGuideline.htmlhttps://www.cdc.gov/traumaticbraininjury/PediatricmTBIGuideline.html

When my son had his first concussion, there were no U.S. guidelines.  The first thing I did after getting home from the Doctors office was to look at the Children’s guidelines from the Ontario Neurotrauma Foundation.      Experts there recommended a 48 watch period rather than the 24 hours period my Doctor had suggested.   So I chose to be more cautious.     http://onf.org/documents/guidelines-diagnosing-and-managing-pediatric-concussionhttp://onf.org/documents/guidelines-diagnosing-and-managing-pediatric-concussion

 

One last thing.  I was able to get the Conference in our elementary school bulletin.  And my school nurse sent it out to her boss who sent it out to all elementary school nurses in Austin.  Increasing awareness one step at a time!  Yahoo.

 

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