Action for Brain Injury Week 2016

This year ‘Action for Brain Injury Week’ is the week 9 – 15 May.

The annual awareness week highlights the importance of seeking medical attention should you feel ill in any way after an accident, particularly after a head injury.

This year’s campaign will focus upon concussion in sport. Progress has been made in elite sport with changes to improve concussion protocols. However, this year Headway (the brain injury association) want to focus on grassroots and junior sport in the hope that all those involved in sport will be #ConcussionAware.

So what is concussion and how can it be recognised?

Concussion is a traumatic brain injury caused by a direct blow to the head or blows to other parts of the body which cause the head to move rapidly, such as a whiplash injury. Visible clues of concussion can occur at any time, but usually present themselves within the first 24-48 hours after a head injury. Some of the many signs which suggest concussion are:

• Confusion;

• More emotional/irritable than normal for that individual;

• Dazed, blank or vacant look;

• Problems with balance/unsteady;

• Concussion or unresponsiveness (this happens in less than 10% of concussions);

• Seizure;

• Lying motionless/ getting up slowly from the ground;

• Clutching/holding head;

• Headache;

• Dizziness;

• Nausea or vomiting;

• Sensitivity to the light.

If concussion is suspected, medical attention should always be sought and sports players should not return to play. As the saying goes, “If in doubt, sit it out”.

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