When you were younger and you played sports, did your coach ever tell you to play through the pain? “No pain, no gain” has been a coaching tradition for generations, so you can imagine how people felt when health experts started to say that this old mantra was a bad idea. More and more health experts began to argue that letting an athlete play on after sustaining a concussion was a bad idea, but it wasn’t until this year that they had proof that their theories were correct.
Fighting Concussions May Mean the End of Playing Through the Pain
Doctors R.J. Elbin, from the University of Arkansas, and Michael Collins, from the UPMC Sports Medicine Concussion Program, joined forces with two other universities to create an incredible new study. They looked at medical reports for athletes between the ages of 12 and 19 to determine just what effects playing sports after sustaining a concussion would have on the athlete. What they found supports what many experts have been saying for several years. Playing with a concussion can have lasting medical effects.
The researchers discovered that athletes who were removed from a game after sustaining a concussion had a normal recovery time of at least 22 days. However, athletes who stayed in the game had an average recovery time of around 44 days. That’s twice as long as the players who got treatment immediately following their concussions.
The scientists also discovered that athletes that didn’t come off the field after a concussion also experienced more severe symptoms while they were recovering. These symptoms included mood swings, social problems, and poor performance in school.
In light of this new study, more experts are recommending that athletic programs develop better concussion treatment protocols, and that they educate their athletes on the subject. As parents, you should also be extra vigilant to make sure your child doesn’t keep playing after they’ve sustained a head injury.
For more information about keeping your student athlete safe, keep following our personal injury blog. And don’t forget to tell us about the ways you keep your kids safe while playing sport on our Twitter and Facebook pages.
This message was brought to you by the traumatic brain injury attorneys at the McArthur Law Firm.