Print the Fact Sheet for Coaches
WHAT IS A CONCUSSION?
A concussion is a type of traumatic brain injury - or TBI - caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head or by a hit to the body that causes the head and brain to move quickly back and forth. This fast movement can cause the brain to bounce around or twist in the skull, creating chemical changes in the brain and sometimes stretching and damaging the brain cells.
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HOW CAN I SPOT A POSSIBLE CONCUSSION?
Athletes who show or report one or more of the signs and symptoms listed below - or simply say they just "don't feel right" after a bump, blow, or jolt to the head or body - may have a concussion or other serious brain injury.
SIGNS OBSERVED BY COACHES OR PARENTS:
• Appears dazed or stunned
• Forgets an instruction, is confused about an assignmentor position, or is unsure of the game, score, or opponent
• Moves clumsily
• Answers questions slowly
• Loses consciousness (even briefly)
• Shows mood, behavior, or personality changes
• Can't recall events prior to or after a hit or fall
SYMPTOMS REPORTED BY ATHLETES:
• Headache or "pressure" in head
• Nausea or vomiting
• Balance problems or dizziness, or double or blurry vision
• Bothered by light or noise
• Feeling sluggish, hazy, foggy, or groggy
• Confusion, or concentration or memory problems
• Just not "feeling right", or "feeling down"
NOTE: Concussion signs and symptoms often show up soon after the injury, but it can be hard to tell how serious the concussion is at first. Some symptoms may not be noticed or may not show up for hours or days.