Articles Tagged with concussions

football-1291426_1920.jpgLast week, in a surprising but welcome move, Naperville’s School District 203 announced that beginning next year, the middle school tackle football program will be replaced with flag football. Naperville’s School District 204 made a similar decision earlier in April. The announcements came after several seasons of decreasing participation in the sport and growing parental concern about their children’s safety, particularly with regard to concussions.

The personal injury lawyers at The Collins Law Firm applaud this decision. For a while now, we have been following the discussions surrounding football and the emerging studies on the long-term health effects from sustaining concussions, and we feel that it is time to take action to protect children.

Moved by a similar concern for children’s safety, Illinois state representative Carol Sente proposed the Dave Duerson Act in January of this year. Under her bill, children under 12 would be barred from playing tackle football. The bill is named for former Bears standout, Dave Duerson, who was diagnosed before his death with chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), a degenerative brain disease linked to repeated head trauma.

football-1647347_1920.jpgYour child plays a sport with a high incidence of concussions–like football, soccer or hockey–and he or she has had a concussion in that sport. Should you be worried? Maybe, according to a recent study by physical medicine and rehabilitation physicians.

The study found that youth patients with mild to moderate brain injuries are two times more likely to develop attention problems; patients with severe injuries are five times more likely to develop ADHD. However, there is a sliver of good news. The researchers at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital have also discovered that family environment plays a role in whether and how these problems develop. More specifically:

  • The home environment and good parenting can make a difference in recovery. Children in supportive environments show fewer effects than children from chaotic or disadvantaged homes.
  •  Early family response to a traumatic brain injury may be especially important for long term outcomes. 1

However, physicians and scientists still cannot fully predict how well patients will recover following traumatic brain injury and do not understand all the factors that influence that recovery. And since 630,000 children and teenagers are seen in emergency rooms for traumatic brain injury every year–and experts estimate the actual number of children affected each year may be closer to 2,000,000 since many see a primary care doctor or no doctor at all after a concussion–this issue is critical. ­2

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