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Concussion

Definition:

A concussion is a traumatic injury to the brain. May be caused by a blow to the head, jaw or face; may be caused by a hit to the body or neck that produces a whiplash motion in the head.

You DO NOT need to “get knocked out” for an injury to be a concussion.


What to know:

  • A concussion means your brain has been hurt.

  • It can occur at any age — you’re never too YOUNG to get a concussion.

  • It can occur anytime — during a game, practice or just playing around.


How to identify:

As a player you may feel:

  • Sick to your stomach or may vomit

  • Dizzy or have balance problems

  • Light is too bright

  • Noise is too loud

  • Sluggish (or hazy, or foggy, or groggy)

  • Confused or disoriented

  • Headache

  • “Not Right”

  • Have doubled or blurred vision

  • Ringing in the ears


How to prevent:

  • Wear equipment sized for you now (not sized to “grow in to”)

  • Make sure equipment fits properly

  • Use the right equipment for your sport and position

  • Follow the rules for safety and the rules of the sport

  • Get proper conditioning — flexibility and strength may reduce your risk of all types of injury

  • Always wear a seat belt. Even a minor car accident can cause a concussion


What to do/What NOT to do if hurt:

  • Do NOT return to the game

  • Do NOT leave. Get help right away. A health care professional should decide the severity of the injury and the treatment needed

  • Follow the Treatment Plan. Just because you feel better, does not mean the effects of the concussion are over

  • Always tell your coach, school nurse and family physician about any concussion you’ve suffered