Concussions in High School Sports

Megan Evans, Staff Writer

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Concussions are the most common injury among high school sports. Student athletes sustain an estimated 300,000 concussions per year. Two in ten will suffer from a concussion this year.

A concussion is a type of traumatic brain injury, or TBI, caused by a blow to the head or a violent shaking of the head and body. The symptoms of a concussion include headache, confusion, lack of coordination, memory loss, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, ringing in the ears, sleepiness, and excessive fatigue. It takes approximately seven to ten days for a concussion to heal.

People who suffer a lot of concussions can develop a disease, Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy, also known as CTE. As it progresses, some patients have trouble with thinking, memory loss, confusion, impaired judgement, change in behavior, and eventually progressive dementia.

Football has the highest concussion rate, followed by soccer, wrestling, basketball, softball/baseball, and cheerleading. A company named “D30” are trying to experiment with new helmets that will protect the head better from an injury. It is a helmet with a squishy orange goo substance that protects the head from a hard hit.

Luana Alves, a junior on our varsity cheer team, was diagnosed with a concussion after a mishap at cheerleading practice.  

Alves shared, “The symptoms I had were ringing in my ears, a migraine, and was very nauseous. I had to stay home from school for four days… the doctor told me to use sunglasses, not use my phone, to not go to big places like football games, and to stay away from LED lights.”

The concussion rates in high school sports are not decreasing, and we need to make a change to that. Schools should discuss this situation and form a way to have better protection in sports. It is a problem, and it can lead to devastating permanent damage.