Does Your Screen Time Negatively Affect Your Recovery?
In the aftermath of a concussion or other traumatic brain injury, one of the common symptoms many people have is an extreme sensitivity to light, particularly to light from television screens and handheld devices. According to the United States Centers for Disease Control (CDC), though, bright light is not only a source of discomfort after a concussion, it can also be an impediment to recovery from head trauma. Accordingly, the CDC recommends reducing/limiting all screen time as you recover from a blow to the head—that includes television, laptops, computer monitors, tablets and smartphones.
Study Indicates that Screen Time Interferes with Recovery from Brain Trauma
In recent research conducted through the University of Massachusetts’ Chan Medical School, scientists found clinical support for minimizing exposure to screens, at least during the first 48 hours after a concussion or traumatic brain injury (TBI). Test subjects who suspended screen time during that two-day-period were found to have a much shorter convalescence period. The research, conducted between 2018 and 2020, looked specifically at 12-t0-25-year-olds who had experienced a concussion. One group agreed not to have any screen time or to do any homework during the first 48 hours. The other group had free access to screens, provided they did not develop any new symptoms.
The data collected showed that those who avoided screens altogether had a mean recovery time of 3 and a half days, whereas the other group, with exposure to television, computer, tablet and smartphone screens, had a mean recovery period of 8 days.
Doctors say that watching items on a screen requires that the eye muscles be almost continually engaged, often in rapid-eye-movement types of activity. That, in turn, puts additional strain on the brain, at a time when the brain needs rest to heal.
Contact Us to Set Up an Appointment
At Advantage Healthcare Systems, we have extensive experience working successfully with individuals who suffer any type of concussion, TBI or traumatic brain injury. Call us toll-free at 1-877-487-8289 or fill out the form provided below to schedule an assessment. We offer locations across Texas, including Fort Worth, Dallas and San Antonio.