VIDEO: Immediate Treatment of Concussions Gets Athletes on Field Sooner
On video produced in Ridgewood, former RHS athletes speak on how concussions impacted them; medical experts say foregoing immediate treatment will lead to longer periods of injury.
A video featuring star athletes in Ridgewood and produced by the head athletic trainer documents the dangers of concussions, all in an effort to keep kids safe and on the field as soon as possible.
Former top athletes from Ridgewood High School – including Aaron Bess, Kelci Smeski, Meghan Roxas and Kyle Gibson – participated in the video, telling their own personal stories of how their athletic performance had actually suffered following the head injury.
Some didn't know they'd suffered a concussion, others denied it to stay in the game. Symptoms of a concussion include dizziness, nausea, head pressure, headaches, feeling "foggy", sensitivity to noise, tunnel vision, blurry vision and difficulty concentrating.
"For years now concussions have been known as the 'invisible injury,'" Ridgewood High School athletic trainer Nick Nicholaides said in the video. "There are no broken bones or cuts or any visible signs of a concussion. So it has gone unrecognizeable for many years."
Bottom line, although there is a risk of dying in rare circumstances, the video's message is not one of fear.
Instead, the video appeals to practicality and passion for sport – to get back in the game as soon as possible, a recovery period should begin immediately. A diagnosed recovery could keep athletes out for one-to-two weeks.
Toughing it out can worsen symptoms, particularly in a contact sport where even small hits reinjure and in most cases leads to longer periods of injury, medical professionals say on video.
Dr. Thomas Bottiglieri, based in Englewood, and Princeton University’s Dr. Margot Putukian, who serves on the NFL’s Head, Neck and Spine Committee spoke of the medical risks on video.
Helmets don't protect against concussions and very often the hit that causes the concussion isn't the 'big hit,' the doctors say.
According to Nicholaides, student athletes in Ridgewood are required to demonstrate they can handle a full course load and perform certain athletic exercises under supervision before returning to the lineup.
The video was funded by a $15,000 grant from Seton Hall University.
Check out the video above, especially if you are an athlete or your son/daughter is.
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