Youth sports concussions are on the rise
A study by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission revealed that the nearly 447,000 sports related head injuries treated in US emergency rooms in 2009 represented an annual increase of almost 95,000.  According to Kids about every 21 seconds in the U.S. someone has a serious brain injury.  One of the most common reasons people get concussions is through a sports injury.
Gary McEwen, PT, Grangeville Physical Therapy, is slated to speak at a forum “Heads Up: Concussion in Youth Sports” which is designed for student athletes, coaches, parents and interested community members.  The Thursday, August 12 forum will begin at 5:30 p.m. in the Grangeville High School library.
“Concussions in sports can happen not only during the game, but also during practices.  Parents, coaches and athletes should know the signs and symptoms and what to do when a concussion is suspected,” said McEwen.  “Many people think unless a person loses consciousness it is not serious, but a concussion is a brain injury and the symptoms may be more subtle, yet equally serious. Some times they may not appear until days after the injury.”
McEwen will use the Centers for Disease Control curriculum during the presentation which covers signs of concussions, what to do if a concussion is suspected, the importance of suspending mental and physical activity during the recovery period and ways to prevent concussions.  Handouts for parents, coaches and athletes will be distributed.
“An athlete should never ignore a bump or blow to the head even if they feel fine.  The brain needs time to heal.  Certain medicines are not good to take during this healing time even though the person may have a headache,” said McEwen.  “We’ll talk about that at the forum and leave plenty of time for questions and discussion.”
The forum is presented as a public service by Grangeville Physical Therapy, St Mary’s Hospital and the SMH Grangeville Medical Clinic.  For more information call Grangeville PT, 983-2241.

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