A concussion is an injury that changes how the cells in the brain normally work. It is caused by a blow to the head or body that causes the brain to move rapidly inside the skull.
Even a “ding” or what seems to be a mild bump or blow to the head can be serious. Concussions can also result from a fall or from players colliding with each other or with obstacles, such as a goalpost.
You cannot see a concussion, and most sports concussions occur without the loss of consciousness.
The potential for concussions is greatest in athletic environments where collisions are common (football, soccer, hockey), but concussions can occur in any organized or unorganized sport or recreational activity.
Signs and symptoms of concussion may show up right after the injury or can take hours or days to fully appear. Parents are advised that if a child reports – or if the parent observes -- any of the following symptoms, medical attention should be sought immediately.
• Headache or “pressure” in head (“don't feel right”)
• Nausea or vomiting
• Neck pain
• Balance problems or dizziness
• Double or blurry vision
• Sensitivity to light or noise
• Feeling sluggish, hazy, foggy or groggy
• Concentration or memory problems
• Confusion, repeats the same question/comment
• Sadness, nervousness or anxiety
• Irritated or more emotional
For more information, contact Certified Athletic Trainers Chris Whitten or Melissa VanGiesen at Hillsboro Area Hospital's TeamWork Rehab, 217-532-4160.