Historically, it’s estimated there are about 300,000 incidences of sports-related concussions in the United States each year,” said Dr. Troy Dawson of Antelope Memorial Hospital. “Other estimates, which include underreported or undiagnosed cases, reflect 1.6 – 3.8 million concussions occurring annually.”
Concussion is a brain injury and can occur without loss of consciousness – in fact most of them do, added Dr. Dawson. About 10% of all student athletes in contact sports suffer a concussion during their season. That number may be as high as 40 – 50% in high school football players. Proper management when concussions first occur helps prevent further injury, permanent brain damage or even DEATH.
Signs and symptoms of concussions can appear right away or days or weeks after injury. Symptoms include headache, nausea, double or fussy vision, sensitivity to light or noise or change in sleep pattern. Other signs are dizziness or balance problems, concentration or memory problems, irritability, depression or feeling sluggish. Recovery may take days or even weeks.
This fall, Antelope Memorial Hospital has taken an active role in making sports-related head traumas more definitively addressed for both coaches and clinicians.
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