A concussion is the most common form of head injury suffered by athletes. It is a form of traumatic brain injury that occurs when the brain is violently jarred back and forth or rotated inside the skull as a result of a blow to the head or body. This can "stun" the brain cells or even result in their death. You do not need to lose consciousness to suffer a concussion.
Any athlete in motion is at risk for a concussion. This may occur in any sport, to boys and girls alike. Symptoms may appear immediately or develop over several days. They may last a few days to several months and interfere with schoolwork and social life.
1. Always remove athlete immediately after suspecting a concussion. Do NOT allow return to play the same day with a concussion.
2. Athletes do NOT have to be knocked out to have a concussion. 90% of concussions occur without a loss of consciousness.
3. CT scans don’t diagnose concussions. Everyone with a concussion has a normal CT scan.
4. It is OK to let someone fall asleep after being hit in the head. With careful monitoring, rest and sleep will be helpful.
5. “Warm Up for Return” is a graded process that requires a minimum of five days.
6. 9 out of 10 athletes will be back to normal within two weeks. They may miss a few games.
7. Kansas law requires a physician’s signature (MD/DO) to "Return to Play."
8. Athletes who return to full contact too early risks Second Impact Syndrome, a rare but devastating brain injury that may result in death.
9. Concussions can affect driving, school work, sleep, emotions, relationships and self worth.
10. The “game plan” is not just about returning an athlete to their sport, it is about returning the person back to their life.