As a chiropractor and long time hockey coach, I have always enjoyed helping athletes. Whether it be the athlete that is looking to increase their bodies ability to perform or help an athlete get back to competition quicker, athletes truly understand the relationship between their body and performance.
In our quest to get our athletes bigger, stronger and faster, there has been a significant increase in concussions over the last 10 years. From 2002 to 2012 the number of reported concussions doubled to 3.8 million!
When an athlete gets concussed, there is often a component of the injury that involves the cervical spine or neck.
In my experience, when an athlete suffers a concussion from being hit, there is a subsequent shifting in the athletes structure, particularly in the upper mid back and neck area.
Once that area has shifted secondary conditions including, muscle spasm, neck pain, headaches and a general feeling of “off” may frequently occur.
This was the case with a young athlete that presented in my office earlier this month.
This patient was playing a sport and collided with another player. The patient immediately did not feel well; reporting neck pain, shoulder pain and a headache.
The patient was smartly held out of competition and reported to my office when the neck and shoulder pain did not get better.
After careful examination I determined there were a couple of areas where the spine had shifted and we got to work improving these areas. One note of interest; the patients balance was severely compromised as they were not able to stand with their eyes closed without significantly swaying both side to side and front to back.
After the first week of care, the patient reported that their neck and shoulder pain had decreased by 75%! While I was really happy with that, what was awesome was seeing their balance issues get resolved.
Within two weeks, all symptoms had resided and the balance had returned to normal.
If you have a son or daughter playing sports and they get a concussion, please make sure you have them evaluated by your chiropractor. You may be surprised at how much they can help.