New Concussion Treatments Go Beyond Just Resting In A Dark Room

Concussions are a familiar injury to Jeff and Amanda Staples of Haymarket, VA. Their 9th-grade son and 7th-grade daughter play ice hockey. Both have experienced concussions, but their daughter’s case last fall was treated much differently than their son’s several years ago.

When Jacob, 12 years old at the time, was diagnosed and treated in the emergency room in the summer of 2013 after being hit in the forehead with a slap shot, he was instructed to sleep and rest with no television, texting or reading until his headaches and dizziness were gone. Exercise was also prohibited until he had gone a full week without symptoms. Read More

This Soccer Move is Causing Concussions in Kids

Health researchers and soccer moms have known for years that more concussions occur in high school soccer than in any other sport except for football. Now, a new study in the journal JAMA Pediatrics details exactly how soccer players are getting those head injuries. Player-to-player contact caused the majority of concussions. But headers, which require players to redirect the ball with their head, were the most dangerous individual move, responsible for nearly a third of concussions for boys and more than a quarter for girls. Read More

An Athlete Felled by Concussions Despite Playing a ‘Safer’ Sport

Months later, the father mustered the strength to sort through what was left in his dead son’s bedroom. A Little League photo collage. Mardi Gras beads from that soccer tournament in New Orleans. And a typewritten personal essay tucked into a yellow folder, with a single word pen-carved into its plastic cover:

“Concussions.”

His son Curtis had written the paper for a college composition class in 2009, five years before his death. In it, Curtis recalled having been knocked unconscious three times in 14 years while playing soccer, twice after leaping to head the ball, only to — “WHAM” — collide with another player. The continuing side effects, he wrote, included “horrendous migraine headaches.” Read More

After concussions, kids face persistent difficulties in school

New research finds that after sustaining a mild traumatic brain injury, nearly 9 in 10 teens who have ongoing concussion symptoms also have academic problems related to headaches, fatigue and difficulty concentrating. And more than three-quarters of those who have yet to recover fully after four weeks report a decline in such academic skills as note-taking, studying and completing homework assignments. READ MORE

Think Concussions Just Happen to Kids Playing Contact Sports? Think again.

In a hot and crowded school gymnasium, two high school basketball players dive for a loose ball, hitting heads midair. The crowd goes silent; trainers and coaches rush to the players’ aid.

For many parents, this is what a concussion looks and sounds like. It is dramatic and obvious, and it’s why some young athletes are increasingly guided toward less physical sports. But the truth about concussions is they can be caused by any blow, bump, or jolt to the head — whether it happens on the playing field or not. Read more