A concussion is a type of traumatic brain injury, or TBI, caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head that can change the way the brain normally works. Concussions can also occur from a fall or a blow to the body that causes the head and brain to move quickly back and forth.
Concussions are very difficult to diagnose and symptoms may not appear immediately. Children, teens, and athletes of any age or level may be reluctant to admit or address the possibility of a concussion, either because the effects are so subtle or because they may want to return to their normal activities as soon as possible.
Today, play of all types is harder and faster, resulting in a steady incline in concussion rates estimated at 4-5 million annually – including an emerging trend among younger middle school athletes. In addition, because of a greater awareness of the long-term medical effects of concussions, legislation in almost every state across the U.S. is driving greater accountability for the management of concussions.