Category Archives: Concussion Recovery

Concussion Recovery Series: Good And Bad News

I’m at the 16 week mark since the day of the car accident and it’s been just about 4 weeks since I’ve been released to start working out. Every day I feel myself getting stronger physically and my brain is slowly getting better as well. Although I’m getting better I still have  a lot of recovery ahead of me and I’m dealing with daily headaches/migraines.

The most exciting news since the last update is that I got my “Thinking Speed” on the Impact test up to 23% from 13%. 23% is not great but it is certainly better than 13%. I’m also going to physical therapy 3 days a week for my neck, back and shoulders and 1 day a week for my concussion exertion therapy.

For all the updates and a look into what I’ve been doing for the past 3 weeks watch the video below!

As always please share this series with young athletes who need to be more educated about concussions! I wish I knew then what I know now about brain injuries, especially sports related ones.

Bad things happen to everybody. Don't let the bad things be what defines you. It's the way you respond to the bad things that are really important. Today was day 4 of working out again and it feels amazing. The good feelings that come from working out with all I've got over powers the pains that come with a concussion. It's going to take a week or so just to get used to lifting again but I know I'm going to come back even stronger than I was before. Every day I wake up with so much motivation to do better than I did yesterday. Sometimes it takes life punching you in the face to realize how much you really need something. I always knew I couldn't live without fitness but now I know how real that statement was to me.

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XOXO – Abbey

 

http://abbeyway.yolasite.com/

 

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Concussion Recovery Series: 1st Week Back To Working Out!

Check out Episode 2 of my Concussion Recovery Series to see what all I did in my first week back to working out after 3 months of rest!

Technically this is 2 weeks behind from the time it was filmed…I’m still really slow to get things done mentally. I will have a lot more to update in the next one which I promise will actually be posted the same day it’s filmed! But the good news is I’m continuing to get a little better every day!

Today is your day. Make it fabulous!

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Please share this series with anyone you know dealing with a concussion and especially young athletes who need to learn more about concussions.

XOXO – Abbey

 

http://abbeyway.yolasite.com/

 

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Concussion Recovery Series: My Story – 5 Concussions Later

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On May 15th I was rear ended by a car going 35 mph while I was at a complete stop in Pittsburgh and as a result I suffered my 5th concussion. For 13 weeks I was not allowed to work out and I was eventually pulled from work after a few weeks of trying to work after the accident.

Some of my major symptoms for the first 13 weeks were headaches, memory loss, trouble speaking, loss of balance, light and sound sensitivity, trouble sleeping, tiredness during the day and trouble concentrating. I am also still dealing with neck, back and shoulder injuries as well.

I’ve been prescribed several different drugs that are supposed to help with concussions and do physical and vestibular therapy. I’ve also done Yoga on my own which helps with calming my mind and reducing head and neck pain. Also, it provided me with a way to exercise while I was not allowed to workout.

After 13 weeks of resting I saw a new doctor who is the head of the Concussion Clinic at UPMC and he released me to start working out. After 1 week of working out I felt ten times better and was sleeping better too. Although it helped me feel a lot better overall I was still getting headaches and feel slowed down.

I'm having a rough week with my concussion symptoms. It's been more than 11 weeks since I suffered my 5th concussion when I was rear ended in a car accident. And just as I thought I was getting better it seems like I've taken 10 steps back. I try to stay positive and work to get better each day with a smile but the reality is while I may not look sick in pictures I actually have a serious brain injury. It's been months since I've worked out and weeks since I've been to work. I can't remember people's names I've known for years, I have trouble finding the right words to use when speaking and I have difficulty concentrating. I get dizzy, I have neck/back pain, trouble sleeping and have balance issues. I share the good things 99% of the time because I want to continue to try and inspire people to live a happy and healthy life no matter what. But I also realize that by doing so I'm creating a false reality of what life is really like with a brain injury. I feel like I need to speak out about the severity of concussions and just how dangerous and life changing they really are. My first 2 were back to back in Jr. High resulting in me having a seizure on the basketball court and lying unconscious. Today I tried to ride a stationary bike and stretch. By the end of it I had a severe headache. It's extremely difficult to judge exactly how far I can push myself physically and mentally because one day I will be able to do something and the next day it causes symptoms that have even sent me to the emergency room. I'm hoping to start a YouTube series next week about my progress and to help spread awareness about concussions and create a platform for people who are suffering from brain injuries to share their stories. The hardest part of recovery is to not push yourself too hard, especially if you are athlete. I've always had the mentality that I'll never come out of a game unless in being carried off the court, but unfortunately that's not the way it works with brain injuries. Every day I'm 1 day closer. ***Let me know if you think the video series would be a good idea! ✌💕

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**Technically it has taken me over a week to film and post this video/blog post. Because of the concussion I’m still having a lot of trouble working on things at the speed I used to. What would normally take me a day to do now takes me about a week to finish. I am going to get the second post up as soon as possible and hopefully the third will be posted on the actual date that I film the video so everything will be up to date.

As of now I am still not allowed to go back to work but I see the doctor again on August 28th and I’m feeling hopeful that I will get the OK to at least try and do a few days. Each doctor visit I have slightly improved all of my levels on the Impact test except for the “Thinking Speed” section. While I’ve gotten all of my other scores up to 80-90% by thinking speed is only at 13%.

The main goal of this series is to spread awareness about concussions. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard people say, “It’s just a concussion.” That sentence is just wrong on so many different levels and I hope this series helps people realize that concussions can do serious damage that can last a lifetime. I got my 1st concussion in Junior High and had 4 by my freshman year of college. I wish I knew then what I know now about concussions. Not only have I learned a lot by first hand experience but the research on concussions has come a very long way since my 1st major hit to the head.

Please share this with anyone you know that has suffered from a concussion or other brain injury or just anyone that you think could benefit from learning more, especially young athletes.

Please leave comments or questions below! I would love to hear from other people dealing with concussions or other brain injuries. Let’s help each other get back to life before our injuries!

XOXO – Abbey

 

http://abbeyway.yolasite.com/

 

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