A sports-related concussion, also known as a traumatic brain injury (TBI), is a major reason for death and disability in the United States. Surprisingly, injuries such as concussions are a cause of death for many Americans. The effects of a concussion to you or your child could last a few days or the rest of your life when not attended to properly. (Later in this article, we will share more information on why properly caring for concussions is so important, and how to do this as well.) Concussions can include:
- Impaired thinking
- Memory problems
- Issues with movement
- Sensory problems — affecting vision and hearing
- Personality changes
- Mood swings
More on Concussions (TBI)
A concussion happens from a hit, jolt, or bump to the head leading to abnormal function of the brain. A blow to the head does not always result in a concussion, but the symptoms of a concussion can range from mild to severe.
How Serious Are Concussions?
Listed below are some statistics showing the impact concussions can have:
- In 2013, in the US, there were approximately 2.8 billion emergency room visits, hospitalizations, and deaths related to concussions:
- Nearly 50,000 people died
- More than 282,000 were diagnosed with concussions
- Around 2.5 million visited the ER
- In 2012, nearly 329,290 children 18 years old and younger, were treated at emergency departments for sports-related injuries, including concussions.
- From 2001 to 2012, the number of emergency room visits doubled for sporting injuries with a diagnosis of concussions.
Top Reasons for Concussions
- In the year 2013, falls were reported as the main cause of concussions and TBI’s. These composed 47 percent of all TBI-related emergency room visits, hospitalizations, and deaths.
- 54 percent were among children 0 to 14 years old
- The next highest at-risk group was adults 65 and older
- The second most common reason for concussions, was getting hit by or against an object making up 15 percent of cases
- 22 percent or more visits to the ER, hospitalizations, or deaths were in children under the age of 15
- Motor vehicle crashes are the third reason for concussions, with 14 percent being impacted
The Impact of Sports-Related Concussions on High School Athletes
Unfortunately, several of the deaths that were caused by sports-related concussions in recent years could have been avoided. The topic is getting more attention now than ever before. One way that has proven to be very helpful in treating concussion symptoms is receiving care from an upper cervical chiropractor.
It is so important that parents and coaches watch closely any impacts to the head in case there is a more serious development such as TBI. It is also recommended that supervisors be thoroughly informed on the kinds of injuries that could happen as well as the symptoms to look for. These can include the following symptoms:
- Slow verbal responses
- Behavioral or personality changes
- Forgetting things such as the rules of the game, the score, or who the opponent is
- Loss of consciousness
- Lack of coordination
- Inappropriate emotions
High School Athletes at Higher Risk for Concussions
A recent study from the National Academy of Sciences highlighted that high schoolers involved in sports are at a higher risk of sustaining a concussion. They could also lower their chances of recovering from their concussion because they do not choose to report it and may want to avoid care plans.
Another surprising statistic the study found was that girls who play soccer and basketball had more concussions than boys. In fact, altogether, girls were at higher risk of getting concussions, with the highest rate being those who play ice hockey.
They also found evidence that once a player sustained one concussion, they were more likely to get another one. The report also indicated that sporting equipment such as helmets did little to help with the risk of concussions, regardless of the brand of the equipment.
Getting the Best Care for Your Child’s Concussion
A great place to turn to when you suspect your child has endured a concussion is our clinic, Solara Health. We are specially trained to locate the slightest misalignments in the upper cervical spine, which many times is connected to injuries from concussions. The C1 and C2 vertebrae are vulnerable to shifting out of alignment because of their location and the wide range of movement they are uniquely designed to do. Even a minor blow to the head can shift the bones out of their proper position. These kinds of misalignments put the brainstem under pressure and causes irritation to the nerves. There are several health conditions that can develop when the brainstem malfunctions and begins sending improper messages to the brain about the body, as their communication is interrupted by the unusual stress.
We are able to correct this type of misalignment by using a gentle procedure that isn’t painful at all for the child. This method is safe for children, and even infants respond well to this kind of treatment. We don’t need to pop or crack the spine or neck to get the desired positive results. Instead, we encourage the bones of the neck to return naturally into place. This results in a longer-lasting adjustment, which saves you money over time, with fewer visits to our office than non-specialized chiropractic care.
Whether or not you are certain that your child is suffering from a concussion, we highly recommend a consultation to be sure their spine and upper neck are in the best health possible.
To schedule a complimentary phone consultation with the Dr. Bohemier and Solara Health call (403) 266-2283 or just click the button below.
If you are outside of the local area you can find an Upper Cervical Doctor near you at www.uppercervicalawareness.com.