Head Injury in Children

  • Reference Number: HEY1040/2019
  • Departments: Emergency Department, Paediatrics

Introduction

This advice sheet has been produced to give you general information about your child’s condition.  If you have any concerns or require further explanation, please discuss this with a member of the healthcare team caring for your child.

What is normal after a minor head injury?

 Your child may:

  • have a mild headache (especially after watching TV or using a computer or phone)
  • feel sick and not feel like eating
  • have difficulty concentrating
  • feel more tired than usual

This is all normal.

What Can i do to help my child?

  • Your child does not need any treatment other than paracetamol, given according to the instructions on the bottle.
  • Make sure they are drinking enough fluids.
  • Your child can play as normal, although calm, quiet play is advisable
  • Television, computer games and mobile telephones are best avoided.
  • Keep a close watch on your child until they are back to normal.
  • Do not leave them with an inexperienced carer.
  • We advise your child to avoid rough play or contact sports for at least three weeks

What should I watch out for?

If you have any concerns or notice any of the following within 2 – 3 days please see your GP or return to the Emergency Department:

  • unconsciousness, or lack of full consciousness (for example, problems keeping eyes open)
  • drowsiness (feeling sleepy) that goes on for longer than 1 hour when they would normally be wide awake
  • difficulty waking the child up
  • problems understanding or speaking
  • loss of balance or problems walking
  • weakness in one or more arms or legs
  • problems with their eyesight
  • painful headache that will not go away
  • vomiting (being sick)
  • seizures (also known as convulsions or fits)
  • clear fluid coming out of their ear or nose
  • bleeding from one or both ears

Will there be any long term problems?

 If you have any concerns over the next few weeks or months please see your child’s GP

Most patients recover quickly from their accident and experience no long-term problems. However, some children only develop problems after a few weeks or months. If you start to feel that things are not quite right for your child (for example, memory problems, not feeling themselves), then please contact their doctor as soon as possible so that we can check to make sure they are recovering properly.

Should you require further advice please contact NHS 111 or your GP

Under the General Data Protection Regulation and the Data Protection Act 2018 we are responsible for maintaining the confidentiality of any information we hold about your child. For further information visit the following page: Confidential Information about You.

If you need information about your child’s health and well-being and about your child’s care and treatment in a different format, such as large print, braille or audio, due to disability, impairment or sensory loss, please advise a member of staff and this can be arranged.