CONCUSSION PROTOCOL - NOT JUST FOR KIDS
Last night I played soccer and stopped a shot with my face. I kept my footing but went down on one knee to make sure my teeth were all there (and not in the turf) and to get my bearings. I had a nose bleed and went off to get that under control. Some ice and a towel made everything better and I resumed playing as soon as my nose stopped bleeding.
That scene has played out for me several times in soccer and in other sports, and I have never thought much about it afterward. I had a bit of a revelation though when a teammate was asking me questions like the date, which I know, as a soccer parent, is part of the concussion protocol.
Whenever a child is hit in the head, I expect the coach to follow the protocol and I have been the "mean" Mom who makes my child wait the prescribed number of days before resuming games.
But when I get hit in the head I make sure that I am not bleeding, or that I don't get blood on my jersey, and that my nose and teeth aren't broken - yes, vanity - and that's it.
Am I impervious to concussion? No.
Do I understand the risk of concussions and particularly of repeated concussions? Yes.
So why do I not apply the protocol to myself? Great question. I need to practice what I preach and become a better role model and take better care of my brain. I am also going to make sure I have a towel in my bag in case of a nose bleed.
Here are some resources about concussions: