Concussion Symptoms

Know how to spot the signs of a concussion.

Many athletes come to our concussion clinic and simply say, “I just don’t feel like myself.” Others may have specific complaints, such as headaches or dizziness, both common signs of a concussion.

The team at the Henry Ford Kutcher Clinic for Concussion and Sports Neurology determines what’s affecting you, including any harder-to-detect symptoms. They specialize in identifying the complex physical, cognitive and emotional effects of head injuries. Getting the right concussion care as early as possible is the best way to prevent further injury and long-term damage.

Learn more about our concussion care.

When is a concussion an emergency?

If you see any of the following signs in someone who has sustained a head injury, call 911 immediately:

  • Confusion or disorientation
  • Enlarged or uneven pupils
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Numbness in any part of the body
  • Persistent, worsening headache
  • Repeated vomiting
  • Seizures or convulsions
  • Slurred speech

Do I have a concussion?

There are more than 20 indications of a concussion. If you’re an athlete who sustained an injury, you may notice symptoms yourself. If you’re a parent, coach, teacher, or athletic trainer, you may notice the signs in someone else. Concussion signs and symptoms typically fall into four categories: physical, cognitive, emotional and sleep-related.

Post-concussion syndrome and long-term concussion effects

Post-concussion syndrome occurs when symptoms last for weeks or months after a head injury. Even with proper rest and the right treatment, the neurological effects of brain trauma persist. Headaches, dizziness and insomnia are the most common indicators of post-concussion syndrome.

Some people also experience even longer-term effects from concussions. Decades after a sports injury, fall or car accident, symptoms such as migraine headaches, memory loss and concentration problems can continue.

Chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) is a neurodegenerative disease caused by repeated hits to the head. CTE changes the structure of the brain and brain tissue. The condition usually affects former athletes or military veterans. Symptoms can include behavioral issues, depression and, eventually, dementia.

Watch Dr. Jeffrey Kutcher discuss the differences between a concussion and CTE.

Our care for continued brain trauma needs

Whether you’re dealing with post-concussion syndrome or the long-term effects of concussion, such as CTE, it’s never too late to get treatment. Our concussion specialists can design a treatment plan tailored to your symptoms. Treatments may include working with our neurologist, seeing a neuropsychologist or undergoing some form of cognitive rehabilitation.

Learn more about our sports neurology clinic.

Connect with a Concussion Specialist

Request an appointment online or call us at (313) 651-1969.

Schedule Appointment Online

If you are having an emergency, call 911 or go to your nearest emergency room. Please do not utilize this scheduling feature for urgent medical situations.

For your safety please select a MyChart Video Visit on Demand or call our MyCare Advice Line at 844-262-1949 before scheduling if: You currently have a temperature greater than 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit, you are experiencing a new loss of taste and/or sense of smell, in the past 21 days, you have been diagnosed with COVID-19, in the past 14 days, you have had contact with anyone diagnosed with COVID-19. Or, you have experienced two or more of the following symptoms in the last 3 days: fever, chills, drenching sweats, new cough, shortness of breath, body aches, headache, sore throat, runny nose or nasal congestion, or nausea/vomiting/diarrhea.

Henry Ford Health System is committed to ensuring our Deaf or hard-of-hearing patients and visitors have equal access to all services. We provide the appropriate auxiliary aids and services, including qualified sign language interpreters, TTYs and other assistive listening devices, at no cost. To request assistance, call 313-916-1896 or email CommunicationAccess@hfhs.org.

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