Clearing your Head – Part II

The second activity that helped tremendously is sleeping.  After a concussion, many will advise that you should stay in bed.  You probably should.  Later, while suffering post concussion headaches, the need for bed rest may not be as apparent.  After the concussion symptoms subsided, I started to go back to my normal schedule of 7 hours of sleep.  I discovered the benefits of more sleep accidentally.  After going to bed early and feeling better the next day, I ran a series of “experiments”.  I went from 7 hours of sleep to 9 hours.  The results were dramatic.  I felt appreciably better and headache levels dropped off.  Once I started feeling better, I let my bedtime drift later and then the headaches got worse again.  I added more sleep and the headaches eased up again.  In a related experiment,  I also played with adding a 20 minute or 40 minute nap.  I have heard that Lyndon Johnson and other subsequent presidents napped in the early afternoon.  Why not try it?  The results of the nap were really great.  Also, if I only got 7 hours of sleep and then had a nap the following day, it took much of the edge off the headaches and prevented me from really tanking late in the day.  I’ve read now  that there is brain science that naps are a good idea for everyone.  Just like walking.  My theory is that what is good for everyone is even more important for those of us with post-concussion syndrome.  We have more sensitive neurology.  Think of it as your own private, highly tuned bio-feedback system guiding you to do the right thing.

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