The Highway to Health - Bumped Heads

by Tony Howarth

I recently had a reader send me this comment:

"As a full-time dad I have to deal with just about every minor illness my two children pickup, everything from a bump on the head to chicken pox. I found the Highway to Health ebook very useful and it's one of the first things I reach for when something goes wrong!" - Mr John Bradbury (United Kingdom)

It got me thinking - although the Highway to Health does cover headaches, perhaps going into a little more detail about 'bumps on the head' would be useful. So here we go...

There are two main types of head injury - concussion and compression.

Concussion is the commonest:

What to do:

  1. Sit down and take it easy.
  2. Put a cold compress (e.g. wet sponge) on the bump.
  3. Try not to worry - or if it's a child, try to reassure and comfort them.
  4. Five to ten minutes later, you should be feeling a whole lot better. The headache won't have gone yet, but it will settle. You might still feel sick, but everything else should have cleared.
  5. Now you can take whatever pain relief you'd usually have for the headache (and see for a whole chapter on relieving headaches).
  6. Take it easy for the next three days.
  7. Keep a watch out for the signs & symptoms below (and have someone else watch out for you too).
  8. You'll soon be wondering what the fuss was about!

Compression is the other type of head injury:

What to do:

  1. You need the hospital - and quickly! Anyone who has these symptoms goes straight to hospital.

Even if it started out as concussion, this can take up to 72 hours to develop. (It's commonest within the first four hours.)

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About the Author

Tony Howarth is a UK qualified pharmacist. After graduation he studied for a PhD - this looked at ways people use the Internet to access health information and included methods of making the information easier to understand. He then spent several years in a local pharmacy (where he still works) to understand just what people want to know about and have problems with. Now that information is here!

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