From a young age, many children take up sports like football, boxing, and soccer. Playing such sports can potentially have a huge negative effect if a child or teenager experiences a concussion while playing their game. Depending on the person, the damage could have a lasting effect.
According to the Mayo Clinic, a concussion is a traumatic brain injury that affects your brain with certain effects being headaches, memory problems and balance problems (Mayo Clinic, 2019). A concussion itself could have a lasting impression on many different children and teenagers. Certain effects of a concussion that could be long term are light sensitivity, photophobia, vertigo, depression, and many more symptoms (“Long Term Effects”, 2018). Although these symptoms are pretty short term, you could potentially have long term effects when you are older, but it can have a significant impact when an individual is still young and their brain is still developing. In a study in Sweden between 1973 and 1985 that observed individuals who had head injuries of people under 25. In these studies, the researchers observed that these people were more likely to have mental health care and not able to graduate or attend college than a person who did not have this injury. Not only that, the individual also had a greater chance of dying prematurely (Reynolds, 2016). Therefore, it is important to know the potential risks of allowing ones’ children in playing such sports.
With the continuous increase of popularity of sports with young children and teenagers, the likelihood of having a concussion has increased. Approximately 1.6 – 3.8 million sports/recreation-related concussions occur each year within the United States (“What is a concussion”, 2019). With the amount of concussions that occur, there are a large number that occur within individuals who are younger than 20. The Blue Cross Blue Shield reported that there was a 71% increase in the number of concussions for individuals under the age of 20 from the years 2010 to 2015 (“The steep rise”). With the practice of such sports, these are slowly leading to concussions. In the United States, the competitive sports with the most reported concussions is football and it accounts for more than 60% of concussions (“What is a concussion”, 2019). Football is one of the major sports that causes the concussion in males as well and it is one of the major sports that causes concussions from 5 – 18 years. Football itself has caused the most concussion in high school sports and the incident rates of having a concussion was .60 per 1000. In female sports, the most amount of concussions occur in soccer (“Which Youth Sports”). With these specific sports causing concussions in the youth, it is our duty to educate and provide safer measures to help younger people to essentially play the sport in safe manner without any injuries or concussions occurring due to lack of precaution.
In order to prevent concussions, we as a community need to help those younger understand the risks at hand and allow them to understand the problems with doing such. Essentially have protective headgear when playing a sport that may have cause someone to hit their head is a big thing. Specifically, in soccer, it would be a wise thing to do play with a head gear could prevent some injuries according to specific ratings released by the Virginia Tech Helmet Lab (Staff, 2018). Having such protective measures will allow the youth to develop and prevent them from having certain effects as they grow older.
Clinic, M. (2019, March 16). Concussion. Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/concussion/symptoms-causes/syc-20355594
Reynolds, G. (2016, October 5). A Single Concussion May Have Lasting Impact. Retrieved from https://www.nytimes.com/2016/10/05/well/move/a-single-concussion-may-have-lasting-impact.html.
Long Term Effects of Post Concussion Syndrome. (0AD). Retrieved from https://www.theraspecs.com/blog/long-term-effects-post-concussion-syndrome/
staff, S. X. (2018, May 2). Could soccer headgear reduce concussion risk? First-ever ratings say yes. Retrieved from https://medicalxpress.com/news/2018-05-soccer-headgear-concussion-first-ever.html.
The steep rise in concussion diagnoses in the U.S. (0AD). Retrieved from https://www.bcbs.com/the-health-of-america/reports/the-steep-rise-concussion-diagnoses-the-us.
What is a Concussion? (2019). Retrieved from http://www.protectthebrain.org/Brain-Injury-Research/What-is-a-Concussion-.aspx
Which Youth Sports Cause the Most Concussions? (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.medstarsportsmedicine.org/research/which-youth-sports-cause-the-most-concussions/.