First Posted: 9/29/2014

Age matters

Because the frontal lobes of the human brain continue to develop until age 25, it is vital to manage youth concussions very conservatively to ensure optimal neurological development and outcomes.

Source: Sports Concussion Institute of Los Angeles

Most vulnerable

Athletes ages 16 to 19 sustain 29 percent of all sports-related concussions.

Source: Safe Kids Worldwide Analysis

Females and males

Some studies have shown that females are more likely than their male counterparts to sustain a concussion, and they tend to have more symptoms and require more time to recover. Various neuroanatomical and biomechanical differences exist between the genders in sports that could contribute to these differences.

Source: Sports Concussion Institute of Los Angeles

Chances of another

New research suggests that for every concussion, the person is 1 to 2 times more likely for a second; 2 to 4 times more likely for a third; and 3 to 9 times more likely for a fourth.

Source: Sports Concussion Institute of Los Angeles

Need for trainers

High schools with athletic trainers have concussion rates much higher than those that don’t (8 times higher in girl’s soccer and 4.5 times higher in girls’ basketball). The reason for such higher concussion rates is due to the fact that athletic trainers are better able to spot the often subtle signs of concussions.

Source: American Academy of Pediatrics

1 out of 10

A 2012 study of 20 high school sports reported that concussions accounted for 13.2 percent of all injuries in the sports studied, two thirds of which occurred during competition and one-third during practice.

Source: American Journal of Sports Medicine

Perils of football

There are approximately 67,000 diagnosed concussions in high school football every year.

Source: Journal of Athletic Trainers

Recovery time

On average, high school athletes who have suffered a concussion take twice as long to recover (10 to 14 days) than college and professional athletes (3 to 7 days).

Source: Journal of Sports Medicine

Mom and Dad know

Most parents are aware of a connection between football and long-term brain injury, yet only one-in-three say this knowledge would make them less likely to allow a son to play.

Source: HBO Real Sports/Marist Poll.

Football helmets

Football helmets currently used on the field may do little to protect against hits to the side of the head, or rotational force, an often dangerous source of brain injury and encephalopathy.

The study found that football helmets on average reduced the risk of traumatic brain injury by only 20 percent compared to not wearing a helmet. Of the 10 helmet brands tested, the Adams a2000 provided the best protection against concussion and the Schutt Air Advantage the worst.

“Alarmingly, those that offered the least protection are among the most popular on the field,” the author of the study said.

Source: American Academy of Neurology

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