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Head Injury

General Information

Head injuries involve trauma to the scalp, skull or brain. Concussions, scalp wounds, skull fractures and brain hemorrhage are just a few types of head injuries. Children often experience head injuries, but most of these injuries aren’t a major concern other than a bump or scrape on the scalp.

When certain symptoms such as difficulty breathing or vomiting occur, you need a doctor’s evaluation. Our expert emergency team stabilizes head injuries and connects you with the treatment you need. For life-threatening conditions, call 911 or visit the nearest emergency room.

Symptoms of a head trauma

Learning the symptoms of a head injury can help you determine when you should visit the emergency room. Always seek emergency medical care if the following symptoms appear after head trauma:

  • Vomiting
  • Seizures
  • Serious wound
  • Blood or clear fluid coming from the nose, ear or mouth
  • Abnormal behavior
  • Difficulty speaking or seeing
  • Extreme sleepiness
  • Loss of consciousness, even if very brief
  • Severe headache or stiff neck
  • Sudden vision problems such as decreased vision or double vision
  • Unequal pupils
  • Weakness or inability to move a limb

Head injury symptoms don’t always immediately occur. After trauma involving the head, monitor yourself or the injured person for the signs and symptoms listed above.

How you can prevent and care for a head injury

Preventing head injuries begins with proper protection, such as wearing a helmet during sports and always wearing a seatbelt. If you witness a head injury, follow these first aid tips until medical help arrives:

  • Apply direct pressure to a wound unless you suspect a skull fracture.
  • Do not attempt to clean or rinse the wound, as this can make the bleeding worse. Instead, apply a sterile bandage.
  • Do not pick up a child or move the person unless absolutely necessary. Help them remain still until medical help arrives.
  • Do not remove any object lodged in the wound or head.
  • Do not remove a helmet.
  • Monitor breathing and pulse. Begin CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) if necessary and continue until medical help arrives.

Learn more about when you should visit the ER and trust Goshen Health for your emergency care needs.

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