Let's Take Brain Injuries Out of Play
A CDC Foundation partnership with CDC and the NFL has helped identify and reduce the risk for concussions. A concussion is a type of traumatic brain injury (TBI), caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head that can change the way your brain normally works. An estimated 1.7 million TBI-related deaths, hospitalizations and emergency department visits occur in the U.S. each year.
- A concussion is a brain injury. All concussions are serious.
- Most concussions occur without loss of consciousness.
- Recognition and proper response to concussions when they first occur can help prevent further injury or even death.
CDC has observed a 60 percent increase in youth athletes treated for TBIs over the past 10 years. “While some research shows a child′s developing brain can be resilient, it is also known to be more vulnerable to the chemical changes that occur following a TBI,” said Richard Hunt, M.D., director of CDC′s Division for Injury Response.
CDC has created two free online courses – one for health care professionals and another for youth and high school sports coaches, parents, athletes – that provide important information on preventing, recognizing and responding to a concussion.
“We believe that one reason for the increase in emergency department visits among children and adolescents may be a result of the growing awareness among parents and coaches, and the public, about the need for individuals with a suspected TBI to be seen by a health care professional,” said Linda Degutis, Dr.P.H., M.S.N., director of CDC′s National Center for Injury Prevention and Control.
Mila Rossi, MPA, is a communications officer with the CDC Foundation.