Winter sports offer a great opportunity to go outside and get active, even when the weather is subzero. Unfortunately, activities like skiing, sledding, and snowboarding come with a high risk of head injury. To raise awareness of this risk, each January several organizations recognize National Winter Sports Traumatic Brain Injury Awareness Month. Any type of head injury can put a person at risk for a traumatic brain injury (TBI), including those that may seem relatively mild. TBI can cause a range of disabilities, including difficulties with language and cognition, so it is important to be as cautious as possible when dealing with possible head injuries. What can you do?
Prevention is Crucial: If you or a loved one participates in risky winter sports, don’t underestimate the importance of donning appropriate protective gear. Before beginning, take a close look at the helmet and make sure it fits properly. Ill-fitting gear can greatly decrease the protective value.
Don’t Hesitate to Seek Medical Attention: Many people think head injuries like concussions are not dangerous, but even head injury that seem minor can have hidden consequences. If you or a loved one sustains any type of head injury, no matter how minor, you should seek medical attention to rule out larger issues.
Learn the Signs: Amnesia or a loss of consciousness are clear signs of a possible concussion, a form of traumatic brain injury. But many other, more subtle, signs are often overlooked. After a head injury, keep an eye out for any change in behavior, including listlessness, confusion, irritability, or a change in sleeping patterns.
Check in with us again next week, when we’ll discuss some of the consequences of TBI and how it can impact speech, language, and communication.
For information on our New York based Speech-Language Pathology services, please call Speech Associates of New York today at (212) 308-7725 or visit our website at http://www.speechassociatesofny.com and find out how our team of professionally trained and certified speech-language pathologists can help!
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