Preventing Sports-Related Head Injuries

Wearing appropriate gear and safety apparel can reduce the risk of injury in a number of sports. In some cases it may not necessarily prevent an injury, but it could lessen its severity. Head injuries are among the most serious type of sports-related injuries, and it’s important to understand how to reduce injury severity or hopefully prevent a head injury altogether.

Ways to Prevent Head Injuries (or Reduce Severity) When Playing Sports

Probably the most obvious answer is to wear a helmet when it’s required; for instance, when playing football. Athletes should also wear head gear for wrestling, cycling, hockey and when batting in baseball or softball. It’s also important to make sure the head gear is not damaged and that it fits correctly.

Coaches and organizers may also prevent head injuries by teaching and enforcing rules and proper playing techniques. An example would be disallowing helmet-to-helmet contact during football. Proper conditioning can also improve a player’s safety.

Coaches and parents should place attention on:

  • range of motion;
  • flexibility;
  • aerobic endurance;  
  • strength; and
  • neck.

Coaches and parents should also encourage players to practice good sportsmanship. There should be repercussions for those who don’t demonstrate this, as it could prevent someone else from being injured.

With regard to water sports activities, diving should never be allowed when the water is less than 12 feet deep. It’s also important to check the water for objects before diving.

Check with the school or sports league to learn if there are policies in place regarding concussions. For instance, the Georgia Return to Play Act of 2013 requires that when a player shows signs of a concussion, he/she must be removed from the game. The player cannot return until a healthcare provider has given medical clearance.

If mismanagement of a concussion or other head injury worsened your child’s injury, contact Jason R. Schultz to review legal options. Call 404-474-0804.

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