For kids with concussions, it's a matter of rest - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

For kids with concussions, it's a matter of rest

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LOS ANGELES -

As a high school cheerleader, high flying stunts are a regular part of Jackie Cortez' routine, but a mishap during practice landed her on the floor and in the doctor's office.

"I landed face-first and the right side of my head -- I was like really dizzy. My eyes were closing," Cortez said.

It turns out she has a concussion. Now a new study in the journal Pediatrics finds children and teens who suffered a concussion in the past take significantly longer to recover if they have another one.

"Symptoms can include headache, dizziness, or just feeling slower -- in a fog," said Dr. Tracy Zaslow, Medical Director of Children's Hospital Los Angeles - Sports Concussion Clinic.

Researchers looked at nearly 300 patients ages 11 to 22 and found most suffered concussions while playing soccer, football, basketball and hockey. The time frame between concussions also affects recovery time. Children who suffer a second concussion within a year take almost three times longer to
recover.

Children with head injuries usually need at least 7 to 10 days to recover. "It's a matter of rest -- and that's a combination of physical and cognitive rest to allow the brain to recover," Dr. Zaslow said.

That also means sitting it out for a while and a gradual return to play. This is Jackie's first concussion, but her mom, Janet Ramirez, says they're taking that message seriously. "If she wants to do it again, she has to get better," she said.

"I will be back. I want to," Cortez said.

So Jackie says she'll wait for the doctor's "all-clear" before she cheers
again.

Teresa Garcia - CBS News

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