High school and college athletes know that concussions are often par for the course in sports and that, when they get one, it’s important to give it time to heal. However, concussions in young athletes may take longer to heal than expected and increase the risk of re-injury until they are healed fully, according to a recent study published in the journal Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise.
The study, conducted at the University of Oregon, compared the attention and task-switching skills of athletes at different times during their healing processes over the course of several months after the concussion. The results showed that for up to two months after a concussion, an injured person may have a decreased ability to pay attention and a decreased ability to process information and switch tasks quickly.
Although the difference dwindled to a few milliseconds as patients healed, the researchers say that these few milliseconds may mean the difference between players who can avoid a second head injury and players who cannot. As a result, the traditional 7 to 10 days given for a concussion to heal may be too short – even if a player insists he or she “feels fine.” Instead, athletes should be monitored carefully and, if they do participate in practices or games, should do so in a way that minimizes their exposure to a second concussion.
If you or someone you love has suffered a traumatic brain injury, experienced Kentucky TBI attorney Tad Thomas can explain your legal rights and options and help you take the next best steps for your family. Contact our office today to learn more.