Concussions Impact Brain Function

Survivors should get medical care if there’s a possibility that they have a concussion from being assaulted. 

A concussion is a type of traumatic brain injury caused by the rapid movement of the brain within the skull from an impact or forceful motion of the head or other parts of the body. 

A brain injury is an assault to the brain that causes a change in how the brain functions. It can be caused by:

  • A loss of oxygen to the brain
  • A hard hit to the head, neck, or body that causes the head or brain to move rapidly back and forth
  • Being shaken or thrown
  • Strangulation (BCIRPU, 2023)


The severity of impact is not directly related to the risk of concussion. For example, a minor hit may result in a concussion, while a serious hit may not. There is no definitive way to determine whether a particular hit will cause a concussion.

Most concussions do not cause a loss of consciousness. Concussion signs and symptoms can be delayed for several hours or a few days after an incident (BCIRPU, 2023).

Survivors should seek emergency medical treatment if they experience any of the following symptoms that could be related to concussions:

  • Neck pain or tenderness
  • Double vision
  • Weakness or tingling/burning in arms or legs
  • Severe or increasing headache
  • Seizure or convulsion
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Deteriorating conscious state
  • Vomiting
  • Increasingly restless, agitated, or combative (Babul, 2022)


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Questions? Contact our Community Coordination for Survivor Safety (CCSS) team at