- By Cynthia (Cindy) Weiss
Catching the Signs of Concussion
According to the Brain Injury Association of America, every 13 seconds, someone in the U.S. sustains a traumatic brain injury (TBI), which is caused by a bump, blow or jolt to the head that disrupts the normal function of the brain. The most common type of TBI is a concussion.
Concussions can happen to anyone, but children and athletes are at a particularly high risk.
Dr. Jennifer Roth Maynard says, “There are over 300,000 head injuries reported annually in high school athletics and over 90 percent are concussions.” Dr. Maynard is a primary care and sports medicine physician at Mayo Clinic's campus in Jacksonville, Florida and chair of the Northeast Florida Regional Sports Concussion Task Force.
Effects of concussion are usually temporary, but can include headaches, blurred vision, nausea, and problems with concentration, memory, balance and coordination. Anxiety and sleep issues can also occur.
Though some injuries can cause a loss of consciousness, most concussions do not. Because of this, Dr. Maynard says some people don't even realize they have a concussion. She adds, "Spreading awareness about concussion, knowing the signs and symptoms and seeking prompt medical attention is essential to helping prevent long-term injuries, especially in young people."
Journalists: Sound bites with Dr. Maynard are in the downloads. [TRT 2:07]