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Who is responsible for teenage brain injuries?

Ever since the lawsuits in the NFL began, the topic of concussion injury is much more prevalent in young athlete's lives. More precautions are being taken into consideration to prevent these serious injuries. However, who is at fault if your child does suffer from a serious brain injury?

Concussion symptoms, diagnosis and response

Concussions are brain injuries that are caused from hard blows to the head. When the head is bumped, the brain vigorously hits the inside of the skull, causing damage to the affected areas. The severity of the concussion depends on how hard the hit, the age of the person hit and the number of prior head injuries.

Symptoms can include:

  • Loss of consciousness
  • Dizziness
  • Headaches
  • Nausea, vomiting

You may think, "Well, my son wears a helmet, he is protected." Often times helmets are designed to protect the skull from injury, they don't necessarily protect from concussions. Making sure that the manufacturer's design of your child's helmet is protecting them from both skull and a concussion injury is necessary precaution.

Who's to blame?

Often time's parents are considered the ones at fault. Allowing your child to play a contact or aggressive sport puts them at risk for head injury. However, safety regulations, safe play and proper training are also factors to consider.

Every school should have proper and up-to-date protective equipment for their student-athletes. Helmets should be inspected for defects or wreckage before any player steps foot onto the field. Not all schools receive enough funding to buy new equipment. This can put many young football players at a high-risk for head injury. If you suspect your child has improper head protection, notify the school immediately and provide them with something more protective.

Playing safely is another concern. Athletes who play unnecessarily rough or aggressive need to be regulated by coaches and officials. This kind of play should never be tolerated due to the harm it can cause opposing athletes.

In 2011, Louisiana passed the Youth Concussion Act that requires every coach and official to complete an annual concussion-training course. Coaches are required to be aware and know the signs of potential head injury. If they suspect anything, the player must be taken out for the remainder of game/practice and not return until a physician clears them.

It is also about coaches showing athletes proper game-play techniques. Such as proper tackling, tackle defense and playing tough, but not playing unnecessarily rough. Teaching players how to play safely can be a large factor in reducing the risk of brain related injuries.

For concussions that have gone untreated or unnoticed, even years later you could still be suffering from serious side effects. Before today's regulations came out, many injuries went undiagnosed only to worsen over time. Because there weren't strict enough regulations and protocols, many are still suffering today.

If your child or relative has suffered from a concussion due to poor-practiced sports related activity, talk to a lawyer who practices personal injury cases. If there was unregulated play or protective equipment a lawyer can help provide guidance and assistance for your case. Litigation or settlement agreements may be necessary; an attorney will help make sure your child is being fairly compensated for his traumatic injury.

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Covington, LA 70433

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