The number of emergency room visits among United States youth athletes for head injuries has jumped 60% in nine years, and is led by playground, football, and bicycling accidents. Basketball and soccer accidents also contributed to this jump. A report from the Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows traumatic brain injuries (TBI) has increased from 153,375 in 2001 to 248,418 in 2009.
CDC Says It May Just Be that Educated Adults Report Suspected Head Injuries More Now
Director of the CDC’s injury prevention center, Linda C. Degutis, feels that the increase may be due to parents and coaches having a heightened awareness to have children seen when they have suffered from a head injury. Supporting this is the fact that the number of hospitalizations is stable, which suggests youth having injuries that are less-serious are seeking medical care. This is essential because even brain injuries that are mild can result in impairments that are life-long.
CDC Says Kids Brains More Vulnerable, Other Research Says Their Brains are More Resilient
Head of the CDC’s injury response division, Richard C. Hunt, states that chemical changes taking place within a child’s developing brain make it much more vulnerable; however some research conducted shows their brain to be quite resilient.
Data shows that as much as 71% of all hospital visits were among boys. Approximately 71% of the injuries were youth between the ages of 10 and 19. Injuries in older boys mainly consisted of football injuries, and in older girls injuries mainly consisted of soccer and bicycling injuries. Injuries in children below the age of 9 main consisted of playground and bicycling accidents.
In June, an analysis that was published in the Pediatrics journal, shows that 57% of sports deaths that were trauma-related from 1980 to 2009 was caused from football. Out of 138 deaths that occurred from football where neck and head injuries were sustained, 12% was caused by youths returning to the game after suffering from a concussion. This is precisely why students, parents, and coaches need to be made more aware of head trauma and its dangers. There are about 21 states that require student athletes be pulled from football games if they have sustained a head injury, and they have put procedures in place to ensure a safe return.
There are many theories as to why the sudden increase in reporting of brain injuries. They are probably all right. Bottom line. Educations and practice prevents serious head injuries. By Mike Ehline at www.ehlinelaw.com