What Are Football Concussions- Can They Be Very Serious?

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Brain damage and sports injury concept with damaged brain model, american football helmet and a ball, illustrating CTE (Chronic traumatic encephalopathy) a syndrome caused by repeated concussion

Chandra Cunningham, DC

Fall is almost here and what does fall bring, other than cooler weather and all things Pumpkin Spiced?
Football!!! But lately when I think about football, I also think of concussions.

Concussions are Mild Traumatic Brain Injuries (MTBI) that are caused by impact or force to the head.
Concussions can occur with or without the loss of consciousness. When a force is applied to the head,
the head moves and jerks back and forth quickly, causing the brain inside the skull to bounce around.
The bouncing brain contacts the inside of the skull, causing damage and bruising to the brain. In football,
impact to the head can be caused by a hit from another player, when the head hits the ground or when
the body gets hit hard enough the head jerks back and forth.

Concussions can happen to anyone experiencing trauma to the brain; not just to football players. The
trauma can be from a fall or when a body is shaken hard enough to cause jerking of the head back and
forth. In a motor vehicle accident, the whipping motion of the head from impact by another vehicle or
when the head hits the windshield or the vehicle’s door can cause injury to the brain.

The brain is comprised of three main parts: the cerebrum, cerebellum and the brain stem. The Cerebrum
is separated into the left half and the right half. The left side of the brain is more logical and analytical
and associated more with language, speech, math and science. The right side is more creative and
associated with emotions and spatial awareness. Symptoms depend on what areas of the brain is
damaged and bruised.

Some of the symptoms associated with concussions are: Headaches, Nausea, Vomiting, Dizziness,
Balance or Coordination Problems, Feeling Fatigued, Difficulty Concentrating, Short-term and/or Long-
term Memory Loss, and Feeling Nervous or Emotional.

At Chambers Medical Group, MTBI tests are performed by doctors or technicians to determine the
severity of the concussions. The tests are performed to monitor the progression of the concussion.
Concussion symptoms may linger for several days, weeks or even longer. The length of recovery is
different for each person.

After you have been diagnosed with a concussion, it is important to give your brain time to rest so it can
heal. Avoid or limit stimulation to the brain such as watching television, reading, being on the computer
or playing video games. Limit or avoid stimulants such as caffeine in coffee or soda pops.

It is important to allow the brain time to recover fully from a concussion. If the brain is re-injured while
it is recovering, the recovery time may be extended and the symptoms may worsen. Repeated
concussions can cause problems later in life. In football, studies has linked repeated concussions with
chronic traumatic encephalopathy, a progressive degeneration of the brain, which includes symptoms of
memory loss, behavioral changes, balance issues and dementia.

As a fan of football, we might be upset when a player such as the quarterback, running back or receiver
is out of the game due to a concussion, which affects if our team wins or loses but it is more important
to remember that the injury is very serious to the player’s health and can be detrimental if the brain
does not fully and properly heal.

If you or somebody you know has been in a car accident, be sure that you seek medical attention from a car accident doctor or car accident chiropractor to treat your injuries. Visit Chambers Medical Group  to receive world-class medical treatment for your injuries.

Chambers Medical Group has car accident medical clinics in the following locations:

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