post-crash anxiety

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  • post-crash anxiety
  • ferrals
    Member

    Does anyone else suffer from this?

    Had a crash yesterday at the start of a race. hit head, marginally dizzy for about 5 minutes, so quit race, though I think in retrospect dizziness was more the after-effects of adrenaline/relief than the crash (I was expecting half the field to plough into me as i went down since gridded on front row with 50 frothers behind me).

    Still got lingering anxiety that I’ll have done something to my head which I know is ridiculous as the only pain on my head is on the outside where its scuffed up. Makes me feel like a real pillock, even more so for quitting the race and wasting 20quid. End up with a mix of anxiety, self-hate for being anxious and guilt that I’m doing something risky when i should be being responsible. Normally I forget all about it in a couple of days (esp after having another ride/race and not crashing!) but end up dwelling on it till then

    Premier Icon wwaswas
    Subscriber

    I’d say being cautious about a possible head injury is the last thing you should be berating yourself about.

    nickhit3
    Member

    sounds like you did the right thing OP. Don’t beat yourself up about it. Schedule a gentle ride next, and just spin those legs with no agenda. Happens to us all- bothers me more at 34 than it did at 24 but such is life. Mind how you go sir.

    Premier Icon Yak
    Subscriber

    I’d say being cautious about a possible head injury is the last thing you should be berating yourself about.

    This.
    My lad got concussed at school. It took him 6 weeks to get over it. Don’t muck about with head injuries. If in any doubt get it checked out.

    hodgynd
    Member

    I always listen to my inner voice ..head injuries as you already know are not to be taken lightly.
    If it still concerns you then at the very least have a chat with your doctor ..even if it’s just a phone appointment..

    Premier Icon hot_fiat
    Subscriber

    When I go all anxious or nervous when skiing, MTBing or especially on my motorbike, I find it really helps to run through things systematically – like a pilot running thorugh a checklist. I’ll even vocalise some things & call out junctions, hazards, road features, speed & gearing. That all occupies my conscious head leaving the monkey in charge of actually riding.

    I came off in a big way in August, OTB at BPW on Enter the Dragon. Broken collar bone (which is now plated) and cracked helmet/concussion.

    Spent the last 10 weeks desperate to get back on the bike (which I will be this weekend with 3 days in Coed-y-Brenin).

    Weirdly despite the severity of the accident I’m actually less nervous about getting back on the bike than I have been after some much smaller offs in the past.

    ferrals
    Member

    Cheers all.

    I’d say being cautious about a possible head injury is the last thing you should be berating yourself about.

    Thanks, I think I need to remember this. I went through an anxious patch a few years ago and was made to feel silly about being anxious (admittedly i was getting anxious about very low probability things) so I sometimes find it hard to get perspective on what is a reasonable reaction.

    nickhit3
    Member

    PS: FWIW ironically i JUST this minute bought a chest protector online having never worn one before in 17 years riding, having narrowly escaped some rib damage in a recent off which as I understand… is REALLY painful. Sprinter2139, glad you’re back on it. sounds like a horrible off 😕

    Premier Icon chakaping
    Subscriber

    Yep, better safe than sorry with head injuries.

    If you are dizzy and confused it’s best to err on the side of caution.

    Look on the bright side, at least it wasn’t an enduro and you’d wasted £50.

    milky1980
    Member

    I’d say being cautious about a possible head injury is the last thing you should be berating yourself about.

    As someone who has suffered a few over the years, this.

    I’ve knocked myself out four times now with a few dizzy moments after OTB crashes thrown in for good measure. Add in a choking incident where I blacked out 6 years ago and it had led to permanent changes in my brain. I have very fuzzy memories of various periods in 2002-05 and I cannot drink any alcohol anymore as it gives me intense headaches for days afterwards, even a tiny amount can set it off. I also have to take a day or two every 3-4 weeks to let my brain calm down and reset, process stuff and get back to normal. No bike riding, work or anything thought-inducing. Sadly some of my friends going back to my teenage years think I’m making it up and don’t understand when I can’t remember stuff from back then or refuse to have a drink (they think it’s some kind of attention-seeking thing). The brain is a complex organ and we don’t fully understand it so playing it safe and pulling out of your race was a good move.

    Just remember that any more head injuries in the next few weeks can cause a lot more problems so take it easy for a while and build things back up slowly. My issues are from having a knock-out OTB and the choking within 3 weeks of each other, never been the same after that. I was even being sensible and not riding my bike for 6 weeks on the advice of the doctor!

    Makes me feel like a real pillock, even more so for quitting the race and wasting 20quid.

    Knock (ahem..) that thought out of your head, £20 is nothing in the grand scheme of things.

    rocketman
    Member

    If you know *why* you crashed it’s easier to put it behind you

    I have been known to fall off and assuming everything is still working I *always* go back and ride that bit again. The worst thing is thinking it beat you which causes anxiety and caution. Compartmentalise it, put it down as a one-off and you’ll forget about. Dwell on it and becomes a problem

    Good luck and GWS

    Premier Icon Yak
    Subscriber

    Good points ^ about now not risking another knock now for a bit.
    The RFU have guidance on this. The hospital pointed us to this for a return to sport plan for us:

    http://www.englandrugby.com/mm/Document/MyRugby/Headcase/01/30/49/57/returntoplayafterconcussion_Neutral.pdf

    So for my lad – it was about a return to competitive bike racing, not rugby, but the principles are the same. Ie the brain does take some time to recover and is more vulnerable in the meantime.

    nickhit3
    Member

    blimy Milky1980 – quite some perspective there.

    ferrals
    Member

    @milky – sheesh, as Nick says some perspective.

    I hasten to add I’m sure I wasnt concussed, don’t have any of the symptoms. However, am meant to be racing on Saturday so might have a bit of a think if that is a good idea or not.

    milky1980
    Member

    It sounds worse to manage than it is, although I did really struggle with it a few years back and did some counselling to get it straightened out. It’s just a case of no alcohol, restricting caffeine and having a ‘me’ day every few weeks, usually chilling at home with some trash TV or just having a good lie-in. I do get a bit wary over big drops and jumps on the bike though, but I was never very good at them anyway.

    A mild concussion may not show any obvious symptoms to you but your friends and family may notice subtle changes in behaviour. Ask your partner (if you have one) to keep a close eye on you for a while, it can be little things like a small change in a habit. Have seen others think they are normal but to others it’s obvious they aren’t.

    If you know *why* you crashed it’s easier to put it behind you

    I find that actually plays a big part in it. I’ve had smaller crashes and been really annoyed because they were either really stupid or simply biting off more than I could chew. The latter obviously puts serious doubt in your mind when attempting the same or similar runs again.

    However if you can chalk it up to just being ‘one of those things’ which I did with the collar bone break, it actually leaves you (or me anyway) with no anxiety about returning to the trail.

    adsh
    Member

    Riding inches from trees at speed and max HR with a mild concussion…… I’d say you did the right thing.

    Tom_W1987
    Member

    Weirdly despite the severity of the accident I’m actually less nervous about getting back on the bike than I have been after some much smaller offs in the past.

    You probably permanently killed some brain cells in your amygdala 😀

    I jest but….

    https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/amygdala-loss-aversion/

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