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Front Page » March 10, 2009 » Carbon County News » Utah Brain Injury Association raises awarness across nation
Published 2,015 days ago

Utah Brain Injury Association raises awarness across nation


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By C.J. MCMANUS
Sun Advocate community editor

As the weather warms and local athletes and adventurers begin their yearly ritual of preparing for summer fun, officials at the Brain Injury Association of Utah would like to warn everyone of the impact a head injury can have on a person and their friends and family.

Every March is Brain Injury Awareness Month and both state and national organization are working hard to get the word out to smaller communities everywhere. States partner together with other organizations, businesses, schools, survivors and their families to support one another and generate awareness and understanding of brain injuries.

According to a recent media release, this year's focus is dedicated to Sports and Concussions, specifically youth sports.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 1.6 to 3.8 million sports and recreation related concussions occur in the U.S. each year.

"Concussions occur even if an athlete doesn't lose consciousness and in fact, it is the most common type of brain injury sustained in sports," explained the release.

A concussion is a type of traumatic brain injury (TBI) caused by a blow or jolt to the head. The severity of an injury can range from mild to severe. Signs and symptoms may be noticeable immediately, or it may take days or weeks before they are present.

According to the release, symptoms and recovery vary for each person but awareness and seeking medical attention immediately following an incident are crucial steps in caring for the injured person, a teammate or family member.

Signs and symptoms of concussions include:

•Nausea or the feeling one might vomit.

•Dizziness or balance problems.

•Double or fuzzy vision.

•Sensitivity to light or noise.

•Headache.

•Feeling sluggish or tired.

•Feeling foggy or groggy.

•Confusion.

•Trouble concentrating.

•Trouble remembering.

The statement also warns those who have had concussions to:

•Never ignore a bump to the head.

•Tell a coach or teammate if symptoms reappear.

•Ask to be taken out of the game or away from the activity immediately.

•Pay attention to any physical changes.

•Watch for any abnormal thinking problems.

•Talk about what is going on with family and professional care givers.

•See a health professional.

•Get plenty of rest.

•Return to practice or play only after the brain has had proper time to heal and only when directed or released to do so by a health care professional.

The release stipulates that concussion symptoms can begin to decrease in the weeks following the incident or it could take months depending on the severity of the injury.

Throughout the month of March, the association will promote sports and concussions awareness and understanding through open houses, special events.

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