In the state of Illinois, there have been over 10,000 reported brain injuries since 2006. Brain injuries can be extremely devastating because trauma to the brain can result in permanent and catastrophic damage.
A large number of the brain injuries that are sustained are the results of a concussion. A concussion can happen when a blow to the head makes the brain move rapidly inside the skull.
Illinois school districts are recognizing that concussions are the most widely reported injuries among young athletes. Athletes who suffer a concussion frequently show symptoms such as dizziness, nausea, amnesia and other memory problems, as well as sensitivity to lights. Long-term consequences of concussions can be very serious and may include changes in personality and an inability to learn.
In an attempt to protect students, Illinois schools have introduced The Protecting Our Student Athletes Act. Districts are now providing informational materials to educate athletes and parents on the dangers associated with ignoring or dismissing concussions and other head injuries. They have also enacted new testing systems to identify even minor concussions earlier.
Students who suffer a concussion are all checked for damage now. A CAT scan may be necessary in more severe cases. There are also computerized tests that can detect whether or not a concussion has occurred. If left untreated, a concussion can be catastrophic or fatal.
It is only recently that experts have recognized the devastating effects that concussions can have on brain performance. They have also discovered that brain injuries do not need to be caused by a traumatic event. Sometimes all it takes is whiplash in an accident or closed-head injuries.
Determining the cause of a brain injury is important. Once the cause is verified, treatment can be completed. The process of recovering from a brain injury can be quite lengthy and costly. An injured person may want to consult a legal professional in order to determine whether or not he or she is eligible to receive financial compensation for damages.
Source: The Courier-News, "Area school districts team up with Illinois concussion laws," Emily McFarlen, Dec. 14, 2011