School and Persistent Symptoms

Key Points:

  • Only a small percentage of students may go on to have persistent symptoms following their concussions.
  • Students with persistent symptoms may be able to receive long term support in school.
  • Some subjects such as math, reading/language arts, and science are harder following concussion.
  • Tutoring is helpful for filling in “knowledge gaps” after concussion.

Persistent Symptoms and School

The majority of students with concussion will recover, and will not require long term accommodations in school.

A small group of students (about 2%) may have symptoms lasting longer than 1 year and will need formal and longer-term accommodations in school.

Common Chronic Issues

The following chronic issues are commonly reported by adolescents after concussion:

  • Chronic headaches
  • Persistent thinking problems with memory and/or attention
  • Diagnosed mental health issues such as anxiety and/or depression

Sometimes, these symptoms persist and impact school participation even after the concussion injury is healed.

Talk to your school team if you feel you need long term support due to chronic issues.

Your school team may need a medical note and/or an assessment, to put this type of support in place.

Long Term Academic Affects Following Concussion

Certain subjects are more challenging after concussion, including:

  • Math
  • Reading/Language Arts
  • Science

In these courses, you have to master one concept before you can take on the next one.

If you have a hard time keeping up with learning after your concussion, you might miss some of these concepts - causing a “knowledge gap”. It can feel tough to catch up and sometimes it feels like you’re falling further behind.

The good news is that this doesn’t mean your concussion isn’t healed. But it might mean that you need a little extra support, such as tutoring, to fill in the gaps and help you get back on track.

Talk to your parents and school team about how you can access extra support or tutoring for these courses.

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