Screen time ban for kids with concussion

Wednesday 5th June 2019

Children should be banned from their phones, TVs and computers for up to two days following a knock to the head, says Scotland’s largest NHS board.

New guidance at NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde states children recovering from concussion should not be allowed any screen time for 24 hours or computer games for 48 hours.

Mark Lilley, a major trauma co-ordinator at Royal Hospital for Children who helped draw up the guidance, says: “On moving to the new RHC over 4 years ago we increased our age limit for treating patients to 16 years old. This brought with it new injury patterns and higher impact injuries.”

“Although there was already good guidance on how to safely return to sport after a concussion injury, we felt that we could give better guidance on how to safely return to other normal daily activities, particularly school.”

 Head injuries were the most common injury treated at the Royal Hospital for Children’s emergency department, with 5,600 cases last year.

Symptoms of concussion include headache, fatigue, poor concentration and nausea, but the vast majority of children treated at the hospital are able to go home after being assessed and treated.

'After Concussion, Return to Normality’ was produced to let parents look after their kids at home and prevent unnecessary re-admission, ensuring they do not return to school within 24 hours.

A team of experts including emergency doctors and nurses, GPs, a paediatric surgeon and a neurology consultant drew up the guidance, which will be distributed across emergency departments, minor injuries units and GP surgeries.

George Oommen, emergency department consultant at Royal Hospital for Children, added:  “Concussion and its impact has and is continuing to change the face of sports.

“What After Concussion, Return to Normality does is highlight the importance of children’s ‘brain health’.  It has been an excellent multi-disciplinary team group approach to ensuring our patients have the best outcomes after suffering concussion.”