Sports-related concussions are a growing health concern in Australia due to many incidents and their possible health effects on athletes.
Injury prevention is a large part of work that everyone, including coaches, team staff, athletes, and parents, try to achieve. Yet, preventing concussions remains a challenge in sports-setting, along with ankle sprains and ACL injuries.
When playing close-contact sports, it is hard to avoid accidental blows to the head, trips and falls, or surprise hits on the field.
However, proper education and awareness, along with first aid training, are the best tools for preventing head injuries and other complications.
What Is A Concussion?
A concussion is a type of traumatic brain injury (TBI) often caused by a sudden jolt, bump, or blow to the head. Though most cases are not life-threatening, any head injury should not be taken lightly so the athlete can make a full and successful recovery.
As per estimates, five to six athletes suffer a concussion for every 1000 hours spent on the field. This frequency links to the type of motion and contacts the athletes face during practice and actual games.
Behind every concussion are a concerned coach and worried parents on the sidelines, and a player who needs immediate first aid treatment.
We all want the best for every athlete before, during, and after sporting events. Beyond the protective equipment and game rules, preventing concussions and knowing their appropriate treatment are crucial safety measures.
With effective strategies, any player will have an increased chance of engaging in a sport they love without the risk of injuries.
A concussion can occur to people at any age. But children and teenagers in sports tend to play in a manner that puts them at greater risk of head injuries, including rough play, accidental falls, and more.
Moreover, their brains are still developing, which means they are more susceptible to injuries such as concussions.
Symptoms And Signs Of A Concussion
It is extremely dangerous for an athlete of any sport who sustains a mild concussion to play in a compromised state. For this reason, it is vital for players, coaches, and even parents to recognise signs and symptoms right away.
Here are common signs to look out for:
- Appearing dazed or confused
- Keep forgetting games instructions
- Answering questions in a very slow manner
- Clumsy movements
- Sudden headaches
- Nausea or vomiting
- Problems maintaining balance or sudden dizziness
- Extreme sensitivity to light or noise
- Double vision
- Feeling sluggish or foggy
- Memory problems or lack of concentration
- Loss of consciousness
Use Of Properly Fitted Equipment
Using protective equipment that is properly fitted, such as batting helmets, gloves, arm guards, and more is essential in preventing head injuries.
For example, a good, fitted helmet will serve as a protective barrier for the skull and help absorb any impact. Still, the equipment alone cannot protect against all injuries. Other sports precautions must be observed to remain injury-free.
Follow Sports Safety Rules
Understanding how specific sport works and exercising proper caution are significant factors preventing concussions.
In football, hockey, and other high contact sports, the players undergo formal training on blocking and tackling using heads up to prevent concussions.
Most sports have also applied strict rules that minimise head-to-head contact and prevent those with concussion diagnosis from returning to a game.
Like in any sport, preventing head injuries requires a team effort from anyone.
Concussions are not called “silent killers” for nothing. Therefore, everyone needs to be able to recognise early warning signs and understand their role in injury management.
First Aid Training
Education, awareness, and first aid training are probably the three most important factors in concussion prevention and treatment.
Coaches, parents, and athletes can all benefit from first aid training. Gain all necessary skills and knowledge in recognising the signs and providing early intervention in a concussion injury.
The education and awareness learned from the training will help remove players from the game immediately before suffering any serious consequences.
Learn first aid for someone who has a head injury.
Contact our team to learn more.