A Concussion Should Never Be Treated Like a "Ding"

Concussions are not dings to the head; they are traumatic brain injuries and should be treated seriously and appropriately. The CDC offers a toolkit of basic information to help everyone know how to treat a TBI.

Click here to learn about the CDC's Toolkit.

When you go to the website, which is www.cdc.gov/concussion, what you'll find is an entire toolkit that contains the following: What is a concussion? How do you diagnose a concussion? What happens in terms of biologic? Then some very, very pertinent and practical questions. How do I manage a kid that has this? What happens if a kid is knocked out? What happens--when do you get a CT scan? When do you bring them to the emergency room? How do you return them back to play? It will be a toolkit that shows the exam, the exact management that is a guideline for you to manage a child or a youth athlete, and some examples to test yourself at the end so that you can feel confident you've absorbed the material. It'll be online. You can go over it ten times if you wanted to and refer to it. And it will also provide other resources and referrals. Now, obviously, every community that has a hospital can use that resource. But this is a resource because 99% of concussions don't come to the emergency room. The patients are evaluated by the sidelines, and unfortunately some of them are sent back to practice. But we want to stop that and hopefully educate people so that they understand a concussion isn't a ding, isn't something minor--it's a traumatic brain injury that needs to be taken seriously and treated seriously. And if done appropriately, there may be no long-term sequelae, and youth athletes will get right back to playing their sport within a week, a month, or the next season-- whatever is appropriate.
Posted on BrainLine October 23, 2012.

Produced by Vicky Youcha, Ashley Gilleland, Justin Rhodes, and Erica Queen, BrainLine.