Concussions: A Concern for Student Athletes
What Is a Concussion?
A concussion refers to a malfunction of the brain as a result of head trauma. It often occurs after the head gets a hit from external sources, which causes the brain to shake inside the skull.
It causes an interruption in the regular brain activities. As a parent, you may understand that within seven to ten days, the symptoms of the concussion might die down, but that shouldn’t stop you from seeing a doctor. Some concussions, if not properly taken care of can lead to something more complicating in the future, and the functionality of the brain isn’t something anyone would want to be careless with. There was a case recorded where a girl was playing, but hit her head and thought she was okay at the time because there was no physical injury. She had no symptoms of injury, but died a few days later from internal injuries.
School Liability for Athletes’ Concussions
La Salle University had to pay the sum of $7 million dollars as compensation to the family of Preston Plevrete; a player who died when he received a second concussion when the first concussion was not completely healed.
The lawsuit was built on the premise that the coaches didn’t take necessary steps to protect, and that they were negligent to allow him return too soon to play.
This lawsuit was an eye opener for other schools. It also changed the way athletes are seen, and the NCAA had to update its guidelines on issues pertaining to concussions.
The NCAA has now put measures in place to prevent players who have shown signs of concussions from playing until they get a doctor’s clearance. Concussions are now being taken seriously by schools, and athletes, coaches or athletic directors shouldn’t take it any less serious.
Concussion Symptoms Include:
These symptoms can be mild or severe.
- Losing consciousness
- A change in personality
- Light headedness, confusion or possibly amnesia
- Throwing up several times
- In ability to move legs or arms.
- Deteriorating headache
What Should I Do if My Child Gets a Concussion?
Parents should watch out for signs of concussions and if they notice anything that can be regarded as symptoms of a concussion, they should stop their child from playing until they see a medical doctor.
How Do I Treat a Concussion?
There is no medicine or direct treatment for concussions. All a patient has to do is rest and not risk reinjuring the brain. Both mental and physical activities should be avoided. You should avoid homework, watching TV, playing games or sports if you are still treating for a concussion. Monitor improvements or deterioration of the condition.
It is crucial to get a medical evaluation if your child has suffered more than one concussion. Such a person should avoid any form of sports until a doctor permits him to do so..
The use of protective equipment such as helmets is the best way to prevent head injuries like concussions. However, the fact that your child wears a helmet doesn’t mean he cannot get a concussion. Sports where helmets are mandatory are the ones with the highest occurrence of head injuries like concussions. You can only try to reduce the risk.
Which Sports Are Most Likely to Result in Concussions?
In team sports, there is a higher probability of concussion happening in sports such as ice hockey, soccer, basketball and football. Snow skiing and cycling are the individual sports with the highest concussion rate. Cheerleading is also high risk for concussions.
Concussions Can Lead to Severe Injury and in Extreme Cases, Death
Athletes, parents and coaches ought to learn all they can to recognize and prevent concussions. The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and prevention) website has a lot of information on concussions.
Ask Your Attorney:
- Who is responsible for setting safety standards for the helmets my school athletes wear?
- Is there any move from sports governing bodies to reduce the probability of an athlete getting head injury?
- Will I be able to demand compensation from the school if I was made to sign a waiver to let my kid get involved in school-sanctioned sports and he/she gets injured while playing?