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Supporting Student Athletes: The Critical Role of SLPs in Concussion Management

Updated: Oct 19, 2023

As parents, we all want what's best for our children. When it comes to their health, well-being, and education, there's no compromise. We invest our time, energy, and resources to ensure that our kids have every opportunity to succeed. But what happens when an unexpected obstacle, like a concussion, gets in the way of their academic progress and athletic pursuits? This is where an academic concussion management protocol, in collaboration with a skilled speech-language pathologist (SLP) and athletic trainer (AT), becomes indispensable.

In this blog post, we'll explore the importance of an academic concussion management protocol and the vital role played by SLPs and ATs based on research cited in, “A Collaborative Model for Return to Academics After Concussion: Athletic Training and Speech-Language Pathology” from the American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology August 2017 issue. We'll also shed light on why parents should consider partnering with True Self Speech Therapy for their children's post-concussion care.

Academic Concussion Management Protocol

We utilize academic concussion management protocols to provide a comprehensive approach. It's specifically designed to support students recovering from concussions, ensuring that their academic needs are met during this critical period. So, what makes this protocol so essential?

1. Holistic Care: Concussion management isn't just about physical recovery; it's also about cognitive and academic rehabilitation. This protocol addresses the entire spectrum of a student's needs.

2. Academic Adjustments: The protocol provides tailored academic adjustments to help students manage their unique symptom profiles. From light sensitivity to difficulty concentrating, these adjustments are designed to ease the academic load on the student during their recovery.

3. Regular Follow-Up: Weekly meetings between the student and the team leader, often an SLP, ensure that adjustments are modified as needed, depending on symptom changes.

4. Collaboration and Communication: This protocol encourages collaboration between teachers, administrators, counselors, health assistants, ATs, and, most importantly, parents. This multidisciplinary approach ensures that everyone is on the same page and focused on the student's well-being.

The Dynamic Duo: SLP and AT Collaboration In the protocol, the collaboration between the SLP and the AT is pivotal to its success. Here's why:

1. Unique Expertise: SLPs bring their expertise in speech and language development to the table, allowing them to address language and communication difficulties that may arise post-concussion. 2. Cognitive Support: An SLP's knowledge extends to cognitive rehabilitation, an essential aspect of recovery for students dealing with memory, concentration, and academic performance challenges. 3. Academic Accommodations: SLPs are instrumental in recommending and implementing academic adjustments that align with a student's symptom profile, making the return to learning smoother. 4. ATs Ensure Physical Safety: Athletic trainers work alongside the SLP to ensure that students safely return to sports and physical activities when their symptoms have resolved. This collaborative approach ensures a holistic recovery process.

Why Choose True Self Speech Therapy? We specialize in providing the critical services that people need during their post-concussion journey.

1. Expertise: Anne understands the complex interplay of language, cognition, and education. We have the expertise to support your child's cognitive rehabilitation and academic adjustments. 2. Collaborative Approach: We work closely with ATs to provide a well-rounded approach to your child's recovery. This ensures that their physical and cognitive well-being is addressed comprehensively. 3. Individualized Care: We tailor our support to your child's unique needs, providing the necessary accommodations and therapies to help them get back on track. 4. Ongoing Communication: We understand that the journey to recovery can be challenging. That's why we maintain open lines of communication with parents, teachers, and the entire care team, ensuring everyone is aligned in their efforts. 5. Holistic Recovery: Our goal is to help your child recover not just for the short term but for the long haul. We look beyond symptom resolution, focusing on their overall well-being.

Your child's recovery is our priority. If your child is recovering from a concussion, consider partnering with True Self Speech Therapy. We'll be by your side throughout the journey, helping your child regain their confidence, succeed academically, and return to the activities they love. Contact us today to learn more about our services and how we can support your child's recovery.

Disclaimer: This blog post is for informational purposes only and should not be considered a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult with a qualified speech pathologist for a personalized evaluation and treatment plan.

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