As parents we all want our children to be engaged in physical activities. Sport plays a key role in keeping us fit and healthy, with team sports in particular providing a host of additional benefits including social interaction and, instilling discipline and teamwork in young people.

As with life in general however, accidents and collisions can occur in sports – with head injuries in sports such as football, rugby, hockey and many others not uncommon. While rules are in place to protect players from head injuries or concussions, collisions are inevitable in contact sports.

While we are seeing increased reporting of concussions, there is little primary research available in Ireland to establish the number of concussions suffered by people each year. Sports-related concussions are receiving increased attention. Doctors now recommend these steps after a suspected concussion:

  1. The player should immediately stop playing or practicing.
  2. The player should get checked out by a doctor before returning to practice or play.

Children who get concussions usually recover within a week or two without lasting health problems by following certain precautions and taking a break from sports and other activities that make symptoms worse.

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