Concussions are dangerous for everybody, but they’re especially dangerous for young athletes.

Why? Because their brains are still growing – and are more susceptible to damage!

Sports medicine specialist Dr. Mark Halstead says that a decade ago, a kid who’d had “his bell rung” might be put back into the game 15 minutes later. That’s because people didn’t realize that a concussion is a serious brain injury. Today, we know that a blow to the head where the brain rotates or sloshes against your skull disrupts normal cell function. And after just one concussion, a much lighter blow can cause another one. In fact, a second injury after a concussion that hasn’t healed yet can trigger severe swelling inside the skull. Five kids a year die from the second impact... And a lot of others suffer from depression, memory loss, and cognitive damage. 

What’s the fix? If you get hit in the head, seek immediate medical attention if you experience headache, nausea, confusion, dizziness, or have trouble with your balance.

And know this: Recovering from a concussion requires physical and mental rest, because anything that requires concentration can make your symptoms worse. That means, no school, no driving, no taking standardized tests, and no video games. 

And in most cases, Dr. Halstead says the symptoms will resolve themselves within 10 days.