As awareness about the lasting impact of concussions grows among athletic organizations, athletes, and their families, authorities wonder how sports teams can best prevent and treat these potentially devastating injuries.
Earlier this year, the NFL cited statistics indicating that the number of concussions in the sport had decreased by 13 percent between 2012 and 2013. They attributed this statistic to a change in the culture of the NFL, new safety techniques, and enforcement of new rules in the league.
This shift represents a positive change for professional sports, but injuries continue to plague a disturbing number of young athletes. According to the Minnesota Department of Health, 3,000 high school players in that state alone sustained concussions in 2013. Interestingly and counterintuitively, a significantly higher percentage of female athletes than males experienced concussions.
3 Lessons for Athletes and Parents
In light of these seemingly contradictory reports, athletes and their parents can take several lessons from the existing data:
1. More needs to be done. With so many young people experiencing severe injuries in sports, schools and other organizations must enact new ways of preventing and managing concussions and brain injuries.
2. Improvement is possible. As the NFL has demonstrated, changing the atmosphere in which athletes compete – and enforcing existing rules – can lead to demonstrable improvements to athletes’ safety and welfare.
3. Players play a role. Under the leadership of their athletic organizations, athletes have an obligation to engage in responsible sportsmanship, as well as to report and receive treatment for head injuries as soon as they occur.
Seeking Compensation for a Sports-Related Concussion
Although injuries during full-contact sports seem inevitable, solid safety precautions and treatment plans can help mitigate the risks. If you or your child sustained a sports-related concussion, and your school or organization mishandled it, talk with a Northern Virginia personal injury lawyer today to discuss the legal options available to you.
President Obama and his team aren’t standing idly by. Read more here: White House Summit on Sport Concussions