Left ≠ Right:- The way head injuries affect women differently
Although sports injuries rarely contributes to fatalities, the leading cause of death from sports-related injuries is traumatic brain injury. Sports and recreational activities contribute to about 21 percent of all traumatic brain injuries among American children and adolescents.
Traumatic Brain Injury
A traumatic brain injury (TBI) is defined as a blow or jolt to the head or a penetrating head injury that disrupts the normal function of the brain. TBI can result when the head suddenly and violently hits an object, or when an object pierces the skull and enters brain tissue. Symptoms of a TBI can be mild, moderate or severe, depending on the extent of damage to the brain. Mild cases (mild traumatic brain injury, or mTBI) may result in a brief change in mental state or consciousness, while severe cases may result in extended periods of unconsciousness, coma or even death.
The 4th International Conference on Concussion in Sport held in Zurich, Switzerland in 2012 defined concussion, a subset of mTBI, as the following:
Concussion is the historical term representing low velocity injuries that cause brain ‘shaking’ resulting in clinical symptoms and that are not necessarily related to a pathological injury. Concussion is a subset of TBI and will be the term used in this document. It was also noted that the term commotio cerebri is often used in European and other countries. Minor revisions were made to the definition of concussion, which is defined as follows:
Concussion is a brain injury and is defined as a complex pathophysiological process affecting the brain, induced by biomechanical forces. Several common features that incorporate clinical, pathologic and biomechanical injury constructs that may be utilized in defining the nature of a concussive head injury include the following:
- Concussion may be caused either by a direct blow to the head, face, neck or elsewhere on the body with an “impulsive” force transmitted to the head.
- Concussion typically results in the rapid onset of short-lived impairment of neurological function that resolves spontaneously. However, in some cases, symptoms and signs may evolve over a number of minutes to hours.
- Concussion may result in neuropathological changes, but the acute clinical symptoms largely reflect a functional disturbance rather than a structural injury and, as such, no abnormality is seen on standard structural neuroimaging studies.
- Concussion results in a graded set of clinical symptoms that may or may not involve loss of consciousness. Resolution of the clinical and cognitive symptoms typically follows a sequential course. However, it is important to note that in some cases symptoms may be prolonged.
Risk In Girls
Teenage ladies concerned in team sports are more prone to sustain head injuries, consistent with a 2017 study that analyzed twenty seven sports in 147 U.S. high colleges.
This is true even for boys and ladies taking part in a similar sports. Results from a review of fifteen faculty sports suggests female softball players were twice as prone to experience concussions than male players. Another study of highschool athletes suggests female football and basketball players endure head injuries morethan male classmates.
The exact reason for these disparities is somewhat unclear, however specialists have some theories. For one, ladies are also additional apt to report a bump on the muscles.
There’s additional. “I suppose one issue that’s apparent is that muscle system within the shoulders and neck, particularly in young women, isn’t as robust,” Dr. Abramson says.
The strength of your neck muscles could indicate the probability of a head injury, particularly throughout sports like association football, wherever athletes typically create contact with the ball exploitation their heads. Boys and men usually have stronger necks than ladies and ladies, which can make a case for the lower rate of concussions.
Lack of Information
Despite the mounting evidence that female brain injuries are certainly different, and quite likely more serious than male’s, the vast majority of concussion and brain injury research involves boys, men and male brains. In fact, there’s almost no postmortem brain tissue available for research, and early research on brain injuries spared female rats due to their menstrual cycles’ effect on outcomes, says Katherine Snedaker, the executive director of PINK Concussions, a nonprofit dedicated to female brain injury. As a result, treatment protocols, clinicians’ knowledge and even women’s, girls’, parents’ and coaches’ expectations are often misguided for women and girls.
“This is brain injury’s time to wake up to women’s health,” says Snedaker, who launched #PINKBrainPledge in December, a partnership with the National PTSD Brain Bank that recruits women to pledge to donate their brains to participate in research about traumatic brain injury, post-traumatic stress disorder or both. A deeper understanding of what makes female and male brains and injuries different, she believes, “could result in [better] treatment for men, too.”
Head injuries shouldn’t be ignored, and there are some serious indicators your young one should be seen by a medical professional. This type of head injury often presents with physical, cognitive and emotional symptoms.“The things to look for in children are headache, dizziness, nausea, vomiting and irritability,” Abramson says.
Other common signs include:
Difficulty thinking and concentrating
- Inability to remember new information
- Blurred vision
- Problems with balance
- Sadness or anxiety
- Changes in sleep, including snoozing more or less or having trouble dozing off
Onset of these symptoms may occur immediately after the injury, or appear hours, days or even months later. Adults caring for children should keep a close watch for worrisome symptoms and seek care when necessary. If signs worsen or will not go away, it’s a good idea to see a doctor.
Rest, including a break in physical and mental activity, is the key to a healthy recovery. Jumping back into daily activities before full recovery can make symptoms even worse and lengthen the recovery period.