Morristown,NJ (PRWEB) December 27, 2013
As the winter season begins, kids are enjoying their favorite extracurricular activities, including winter team sports. Sports like skiing, hockey, snowboarding and even ice skating can result in injury if safety guidelines are not followed. Last year, over one million children visited a hospital emergency room with a sports-related injury, including concussions. In fact, more than one million children sustain head injuries each year from a sports-related injury, but many who experience mild injuries never even consult with a medical professional after the incident. Knowing what precautions to take can help prevent injuries, including serious brain injuries. Atlantic NeuroSurgical Specialists (ANS), New Jersey’s largest private neurosurgical practice, provides information on preventing and recognizing traumatic brain injuries (TBI).
“TBIs are one of the most common conditions neurosurgeons see,” notes ANS neurosurgeon Dr. Brian Beyerl. “Parents and coaches need to work together with children to ensure the safest playing conditions are being made available to today’s youth. Taking simple precautions, such as wearing the proper protective gear, can help increase a child’s safety.” Dr. Beyerl suggests some preventative measures and how to identify symptoms of TBI:
•Make sure coaches are teaching the proper technique.
•Check playing equipment routinely for wear or tear.
•Before team sports begin, the child should have a preseason exam or undergo a baseline test.
•Enforce a “no hits to the head” policy within your child’s league.
•In contact sports, wear a protective mouth guard (must cover all teeth). The mouth guard can act as a shock absorber, if hit in an upward motion.
•Strengthening neck muscles when conditioning can help to increase the force required to cause injury, ie concussion.
•Appropriate protective gear must be worn to protect the head and neck; almost every sport has something that can be worn.
•If an athlete does suffer a concussion, they should not be allowed back into play until a medical professional evaluates their injury.
Recognizing the Symptoms
•Any clear fluid or blood coming from the ears or nose
•Swelling of the scalp
•Vomiting that occurs three or more times
•Blurred vision and/or dilated, unequal size of pupils
•Dizziness or inability to balance properly
•Incapable of responding to others, semi- comatose state
•Paralysis or difficulty in moving body parts
•Body numbness or tingling sensation
•Ringing in the ears, changes in hearing quality
Getting Back to the Game
“When dealing with a TBI, it is very important to make sure that the injury is fully healed before returning to play,” states fellow ANS neurosurgeon Jonathan Baskin, MD. “There should be an open line of communication among the physician, athletic trainer, parent, and athlete to prevent risk of further injury. Even if the patient is feeling 100 percent recovered, it is recommended he/she pass the appropriate physical before jumping back into the game.” Understanding the severity of a TBI can decrease sports-related injuries dramatically.
Don’t let insurance come before your health. ANS sees all patients. For more information, visit http://www.ansdocs.com or call 973.285.7800. If you’re suffering from back pain, the ANS Spine Center is now seeing patients. Call for an appointment to be evaluated by our in-network physician.