Youth winter sports are underway, and with a recent increase in national attention on the possible dangers of head trauma for athletes, it is important for coaches, parents and players to recognize symptoms of a concussion and also help lessen their likelihood of occurring.

"Because concussion can Affect thinking, the person WHO Suffered the injury might not realize there is a problem," Said Dr. Kathryn Gloyer, a primary care sports medicine physician Health With Penn State in State College. "Be aware of the symptoms of concussion so you can recognize a possible injury to yourself or others, especially  young athletes ."

A concussion is a brain injury resulting from a traumatic force to the head. Concussions can be caused by getting hit in the head with a ball, colliding with another person, falling down, or any other incident that leads to a blow to the head, according to Gloyer.

Serious brain injury

If the injured person has consciousness, has unequal pupils, has seizures, or experiences a worsening of symptoms, seek immediate medical help; These could be signs of a more serious brain injury. "If you suspect that someone has a concussion-especially a child who is not old enough to describe symptoms-make sure he or she sees a  health care provider," Gloyer said.

An individual with a concussion may seek care at an emergency room, urgent care center, or at their regular provider's office. Your CT-MRI scans are typically normal in people with concussions. Some patients might need to stay overnight in the hospital for observation.

Mild Concussion 

For a mild concussion, treatment includes physical and cognitive rest. "Give the body to break from sports and other strenuous activity, and allow the brain to rest by limiting reading and similar tasks," Gloyer said. "A person with a concussion should be able to get adequate rest, and the caretaker should monitor for worsening symptoms."

"If a player returns to activity before the body heals from concussion, a second injury could cause prolonged or worsened symptoms, or second-impact syndrome, a rare and potentially fatal condition in which another concussion causes rapid and severe  brain  swelling," Gloyer said .concussion, a second injury could cause prolonged or worsened symptoms, or second-impact syndrome, a rare and potentially fatal condition in which another concussion causes rapid and severe Gloyer said.

It's impossible to refrain from activities that might cause a concussion since anything from walking downstairs to participating in sports can lead to a fall or collision. However, Gloyer says common sense precautions can lessen the risk. These include: concussion since anything from walking downstairs to participating in sports can lead to a fall or collision. However, Gloyer says common sense precautions can lessen the risk. These include:

  1. Wearing your seatbelt in vehicles and putting children in age-appropriate safety seats
  2. Removing throw rugs and other tripping hazards for seniors
  3. Using safety gates at the top of stairs when young children are present
  4. Making sure playground surfaces are soft
  5. Wearing a helmet or other protective gear indicated for your sport

While protective gear, such as mouthguards and helmets, does not prevent concussion, it does help to protect players from fractures, bruises, and lacerations. Be sure that helmets fit properly and are not damaged. Gloyer says anyone who suffers a head injury should see a medical professional before returning to activity.