The identification of LOC can be very tricky, as the athlete may lose consciousness very briefly and this event may not be directly observed by others. By definition, LOC represents a state of brief coma in which the eyes are typically closed and the athlete is unresponsive to external stimuli. LOC is most obvious when an athlete makes no attempt to brace his or her fall following a blow to the head. Any athlete with documented LOC should be managed conservatively, and return to play is contraindicated.
In the United States, the annual incidence of sports-related concussion is estimated at 300,000. Estimates regarding the likelihood of an athlete in a contact sport experiencing a concussion may be as high as 19% per season.
Dr Goulet has also designed a concussion education program and is the Clinical Supervisor for the Concussion Education Program for the Sports Legacy Institute.
Some of the symptoms one may experience with a severe concussion would be things such as lack of attentiveness, dizziness, delayed responses to questions, nausea, blurred speech or vision, among others....
These results support the working hypothesis that the cognitive consequences of pediatric sports-related concussions do not outweigh the benefits associated with childhood sports participation.
Many full-contact sports such as football and hockey have pee-wee or youth leagues that give children the opportunity to learn and play the sport. These leagues are where childhood concussions most commonly happen. The number of young children treated in hospital ERs for concussions they got while playing on sports teams has doubled in just a decade, a new study shows (Boyles).
It’s not just the kids that are sometimes unaware. Often, many parents want their child to succeed in sports and athletics. They get their child involved at an early age and are unaware of or even oblivious to the risk young children are at. Many are motivated by the want to have an athletic child and choose to ignore the risk. A new study has documented a growing number of emergency department visits by children and adolescents with sports-related concussion, but it is unknown whether the increase reflects a true rise in the number of incidents or better reporting due to greater awareness (Mitka). Even with the knowledge of the dangers of full-contact sports, many concussions and other injuries are unnoticed or ignored. According to the American College of Sports Medicine, around 85% of sports-related concussions go undiagnosed (Boyles).
According to the researcher Kia Boriboon, “A concussion occurs when the brain repeatedly collides with the skull, most often due to a blow to the head.” Even though we have a plan for dealing with concussions, it’s obviously not doing as well of a job as we expected....
When first getting involved in sports, many young children have no idea what a concussion is. They aren’t aware of the danger of injury at a young age. However, parents and other adults involved with youth sports SHOULD be aware of the possibility of injury, and SHOULD do everything that they can to avoid or eliminate concussions, which can have serious lifetime consequences far beyond any positive that the youth gets from participating in youth sports.
That is until a few years ago when Langlois, Rutland-Brown, & Wald (2006) found that nearly 3.8 million sports- and recreation-related concussions occur each year in the United States, with children and teens being at the highest risk....
The young mind is so fragile. Children tend to be more prone to concussions than college and professional athletes because the brain isn’t as developed. The effects of concussions at a young age are varied. Some children, with proper medical attention and precaution in the future, see little to no long-term effects and can make a full recovery (Zoroya). Many, however, aren’t treated immediately. Over the years, studies have been connecting long-term brain injury and even death to concussions. For children, the brain is weaker because it is still growing. Brain development is in its most important stages between ages 8-17. Common long-term effects of brain injuries at a young age are loss of memory, loss of the ability of multitask, and a fade or delay of the senses.
Concussions are an increasingly hot topic in sports. Over the last decade, awareness for the injury has soared. As we learn more, more precautions need to be put in place to prevent concussions. But more importantly, when they do happen, we need to be aware of the signs and prepared with the treatment required to lessen the severity. As the world learns more and more about concussions and the risks, changes in treatment are in order. In schools, any athlete or player with any type of concussion-like symptoms should not be allowed to be put back into the game. To return to practice the next day, the athlete should be required to have clearance by a professional with experience in diagnosing concussions. No game is more important than the health of the kids playing.
Mitka, Mike. "Reports of Concussions from Youth Sports Rise Along with Awareness of the Problem." Journal of the American Medical Association 304.16 (2010): 1775. ProQuest Nursing & Allied Health Source. Web. 12 Dec. 2011.