Football Concussions Research Paper

Topics: Traumatic brain injury, Concussion, Brain Pages: 5 (1855 words) Published: April 4, 2013
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Football is one of the most beloved sports in the United States. It is one of the most violent bone crushing sports, leaving players permanently injured for life in some cases. The most common injury that football players suffer from pee-wee through the NFL is the concussion. A concussion is a traumatic brain injury that changes the way your brain works. The effects of a concussion are usually temporary and can result in a full recovery if its minor and treated correctly. A concussion can lead to brain problems later in life, even after a player has finished playing football. This is why people are studying and trying to understand concussions fully in order to prevent and treat future ones. Concussions are very serious and shouldn’t be taken lightly which is why it has become a major topic in football. As much as professional and young athletes want to prove their toughness and continue to play, new research is proving that concussions are far more dangerous than anyone could of predicted.

Concussions can be very difficult to spot especially since plays don’t necessarily have to be knocked out in order to receive a concussion. This is why players who suffer from head injuries are often told to "shake it off" and get back in the game. Many concussions in high school go undiagnosed due to lack of staff, player, and family knowledge about concussions. Being able to recognize a concussion is the first step in protecting athletes. Ways to recognize a concussion that has either been knocked out or still conscious would be if a player feels dizzy, confused and forgetful, complains about headaches, and/or vomit or feels nauseous. Concussion symptoms can either occur right away or in some cases they can begin weeks later after receiving the hit that caused the concussion. If a player is suffering from the symptoms of a concussion and continues to play they are at risk for "second-hit syndrome." This is when a player gets hits and receives another concussion while playing with the previous one that hasn’t healed. This can result in brain hemorrhaging and sudden death (Neely 1). Noticing the symptoms of a concussion is the first step in protecting athletes. To better educate and understand concussions, knowledge on how they occur and what causes it to happen is very important.

A concussion can be caused by a hit or jolt to the head. Players don’t necessarily have to get hit in the head to get a concussion. They can be hit in the body hard enough that the player's head whips back and forth causing the brain to twist and/or bounce around within the skull. A concussion causes no structural damage to the brain, it is not a bruise on the brain. When a concussion occurs players can be knocked out, but for the most part players are usually conscious and may not even realize they sustained one. Football players receive huge amounts of force from impacts on there head during a football game. When measuring a collision the unit used is a "G". Getting hit in the head with a high flying soccer ball causes around 20G's, which is like getting hit in a rear-end car crash at a low speed. The disturbing fact about football is that a high-school football player who, according to a recent evaluation by Purdue researchers, received a blow to the head during a game that carried a force of 289G. The scariest part was not just the amount of force but that the player showed no visible signs of a concussion (Vandantam 1). This is scary because if that player sustained a concussion and he and/or the team staff didn’t realize it, he can cause even more serious damage to his head by continuing to play in the game. This is why people involved in football are trying to learn more about concussions in order to protect there players.

Due to the growing topic of concussions in football new ways of prevention are becoming available. No one technique or safety equipment can completely stop concussions from happening as of right now. It...
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