More than 2.6 million children receive medical treatment each year for sports and recreation-related injuries. The diagnosis of concussions is happening more frequently due to education and greater awareness that this injury can happen in any sport. A concussion is a type of traumatic brain injury caused by a blow or impact to the head.
Signs and Symptoms
It is important that parents and caregivers recognize the signs and symptoms of a concussion to prevent second impact injury or long-term impairments if your child has experienced a bump or blow to the head during a game or practice.
Appears dazed or stunned, is confused about assignment or position, forgets sports plays, is unsure of game, score, or opponent, moves clumsily, answers questions slowly, loses consciousness (even briefly), shows behavior or personality changes, cannot recall events prior to hit or fall, and/or cannot recall events after hit or fall.
Reported Symptoms by Athlete
Headache or “pressure” in the head, nausea or vomiting, balance problems or dizziness, double or blurry vision, sensitivity to light, sensitivity to noise, feeling sluggish, hazy, foggy, or groggy, concentration or memory problems, confusion, and/or does not “feel right.”
Steps to Take When a Concussion is Suspected
- Seek medical attention right away – A health care professional will be able to decide how serious the concussion is and when it is safe for your child to return to activities.
- Keep your child out of play – Concussions take time to heal. Do not let your child return to play until cleared by a health professional. Returning to play before healing can prolong symptoms and increase the risk of another concussion.
- Tell your child’s coach about any recent concussion – Coaches should know if your child had a recent concussion.