Concussions In Sports Psychology Essay

Dr. Bennet Omalu is a Pathologist in Pittsburgh who studies the brain. While working here, Dr. Omalu discovered a new disorder that he named Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy, also known as CTE. Omalu did not discover this disorder until he did an autopsy on a former NFL Pittsburgh Steeler Football player, Mike Webster, who died at the age of Fifty. Webster was living out of his car, he would tase himself with a taser just to go to sleep. He was suffering from severe back pain, dementia,depression, and amnesia.

He became angry with his wife and was very confused about a lot of things, he could barely answer any questions because of the loss of memory. Dr. Omalu figured out that this was a normal brain and all he wanted to do was “fix this brain”. He carefully examined Webster’s brain and saw that because of the constant head hits and head injuries he acquired while playing football for nearly seventeen years, that his brain was shaken up way too many times and released protein build up and caused memory loss, brain damage, abnormal behavior, dizziness, fatigue and much more.

Dr. Omalu believes that the NFL would be very pleased to hear about what he had discovered. He was wrong. The NFL ignored Dr. Omalu and his findings. When the League held a summit, Dr. Omalu was not invited, someone else had to present his research to the audience instead. Omalu spent several thousands of his own money to find the research on CTE and the NFI did not care. They did not want anything to do with Omalu or his research. In the United States, the annual rate of sports-related concussions is estimated at 300,000.

Estimates regarding the hance of an athlete in contact sport experiencing a concussion may be as high as 19% per season. Common signs reported by athletes that has suffered from a concussion may include: headaches, nausea, dizziness, blurred vision, sensitivity to light or noise, and loss of memory. Acute evaluation continues with the assessment of concussions. First, the athlete should establish the presence of any loss or other alteration of consciousness (LOC). LOC is relatively rare. LOC can be very tricky. Athletes may lose consciousness very briefly and it may not be directed by others.

LOC represents a state of brief coma in which the eyes are closed and the athlete is unresponsive. The most common is when the athlete makes no attempt to brace him or her from falling, due to a blow to the head. CT, MRI, and EEG tests are not useful in identifying the effects of a concussion. Usually the test are unremarkable or they may appear normal, even in athletes sustaining a severe concussion. Athletes who are not fully recovered from their first initial concussion are significantly vulnerable for a recurrent cumulative second concussion. (www. neurosurgery. pitt. edu/ centers-excellence/brain-and-spine-injury/concussions).

Concussions are graded as grade one (mild), grade two (moderate), and grade three (severe). With grade one, symptoms last about fifteen minutes and no loss of consciousness. Having a grade two concussion, symptoms last over fifteen minutes and if the athlete has a grade three concussion, they lose consciousness, just for a few seconds. The seriousness of a concussion dictates what type of medical attention the person should seek. Most people who have a concussion usually recovers after they get the proper medical attention. (www. webmd. com/brain/concussion-traumatic-braininjury-symptoms-causes-treatments? age=2)

Long term effects on multiple concussions can cause (CTE) Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy, a disease found in the brain of athletes with repetitive brain trauma. (MCI) Mild Cognitive Impairments, involves problems with memory, language, thinking and judgment that can be greater than normal age-related changes. (PCS) Post-Concussion Syndrome, can be mistaken for (MCI) because of the similar symptoms they they have. (http:// www. concussiontreatment. com/concussionfacts. html#sfaq8). It is important to take care of one while having a concussion because it is more likely to recur due to playing sports again too early.

If someone has already had one concussion, they could be 1-2 times more likely to receive a second one. If they have had two concussions, then a third is 2-4 times more likely, and if they have had three concussions, then they are 3-9 times more likely to receive their fourth concussion. Females are more likely than males to get a concussion, and they tend to have more symptoms and require more time to recover as well. The differences in genders play a role in these differences. (http:// www. concussiontreatment. com/concussionfacts. html#sfaq8)

Ten percent of all contact sport causes athletes to end up having a concussion yearly. Brain injuries cause more deaths than any other injury. Football brain injuries account for sixtyfive percent to ninety-five percent of all fatalities. Football injuries that happen with the brain occurs at the rate of one in every 5. 5 games. In any given season, ten percent of all collegiate level athletes and twenty percent of all high school players sustain brain injuries. About eighty-seven percent of professional boxers have sustained a brain injury. Five percent of soccer players sustain brain injuries as a result of their sport.

An athlete who sustains concussion is 4-6 times more likely to sustain a second concussion. Effects of a concussion are likely to occur for an athlete who returns to play prior to a complete recovery, without a complete recovery, athletes are more likely to easily get a second one. Up to eighty-six percent of athletes that suffer a concussion will end up going through PostTraumatic Migraine or any type of headache pain. In fact, recent evidence indicates that the severity of headache symptoms may be a significant indicator of severity of head injury and help return to play decisions.