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10 Things Parents Should Know Before Putting Your Kids in Sports: A Concussion Summary

Sports are fun and medical professionals agree that the hard work and discipline learned from sports are essential parts of a healthy lifestyle. However, kids who are engaged in sports frequently are victims of concussions.

Although a widely-recognized sports injury, concussions are more common and subtle than people might think. What are the signs of concussion in children? How long does it normally take to recover from a concussion? Here are a few basic facts about concussion so your family can continue a healthy lifestyle.

  1. A concussion is a bump to the head, but does not have to have loss of consciousness, or a “knockout.”
  2. The signs of concussion in children include headache, nausea/vomiting, dizziness, confusion, blurry vision, hearing or light irritation, sluggishness, etc.
  3. The most serious signs are unequal pupils, drowsiness, worsening headache, slurred speech, weakness, repeated vomiting, strange behavior, etc. Take your child to your local emergency room for emergent medical attention.
  4. Trainers and coaches should be notified immediately and begin the concussion protocol.
  5. Everyone is different so everyone should have medical attention to determine where they land on the concussion spectrum.
  6. Medical help includes a long series of tests with both questions and physical actions. Those with worse symptoms need observation or even a CAT scan.
  7. Athletes must rest and follow their medical professional’s instructions on all the steps before returning to full play.
  8. Athletes do not need to miss school, but may need adjustments if concussion symptoms continue to make concentration difficult.
  9. Concussion symptoms resolve for 9/10 people in 7-10 days, but some have symptoms for weeks.
  10. Second impact syndrome is a serious permanent brain injury an athlete receives from a head injury that occurs before they fully recover from the previous concussion.

It is essential that parents are aware of the signs of concussion in children to protect them from returning to play too soon. Head injuries can be dangerous so it’s best to have it checked by a doctor as soon as possible. Questions? Feel free to reach out to us at any of our Texas emergency rooms.

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