A concussion is a brain injury and all brain injuries are serious. They are caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head, or by a blow to another part of the body with the force transmitted to the head. They can range from mild to severe and can disrupt the way the brain normally works. Even though most concussions are mild, all concussions are potentially serious and may result in complications including prolonged brain damage and death if not recognized and managed properly. In other words, even a "ding" or a bump on the head can be serious. You can’t see a concussion and most sports concussions occur without loss of consciousness. Signs and symptoms of concussion may show up right after the injury or can take hours or days to fully appear. If your child reports any symptoms of concussion, or if you notice the symptoms or signs of concussion yourself, seek medical attention right away.
Symptoms may include one or more of the following:
Signs observed by teammates, parents and coaches include:
• "Pressure in head"
• Nausea or vomiting
• Neck pain
• Balance problems or dizziness
• Blurred, double, or fuzzy vision
• Sensitivity to light or noise
• Feeling sluggish or slowed down
• Feeling foggy or groggy
• Change in sleep patterns
• "Don’t feel right"
• Fatigue or low energy
• Nervousness or anxiety
• More emotional
• Concentration or memory problems
(forgetting game plays)
• Repeating the same question/comment
|• Appears dazed
• Vacant facial expression
• Confused about assignment
• Forgets plays
• Is unsure of game, score, or opponent
• Moves clumsily or displays incoordination
• Answers questions slowly
• Slurred speech
• Shows behavior or personality changes
• Can’t recall events prior to hit
• Can’t recall events after hit
• Seizures or convulsions
• Any change in typical behavior or personality
• Loses consciousness
Adapted from the CDC and the 3rd International Conference on Concussion in Sport
Document created 7/1/2011
District 125 Policy on Student Athlete Concussions and Head Injuries
The Superintendent or designee shall develop and implement a program to manage concussions and head injuries suffered by student athletes. The program shall:
1. Comply with the concussion protocols, policies, and by-laws of the Illinois High School Association, including its Protocol for NFHS Concussion Playing Rules
and its Return to Play Policy
. These specifically require that:
a. A student athlete who exhibits one or more signs, symptoms, or behaviors consistent with a concussion in a practice or game shall be removed immediately from participation or competition at that time.
b. A student athlete who has been removed from an interscholastic contest for a possible concussion or head injury may not return to that contest unless cleared to do so by a physician licensed to practice medicine in all its branches in Illinois or a certified athletic trainer.
c. If not cleared to return to that contest, a student athlete may not return to play or practice until the student athlete has provided his or her school with written clearance from a physician licensed to practice medicine in all its branches in Illinois or a certified athletic trainer working in conjunction with a physician licensed to practice medicine in all its branches in Illinois.
2. Inform student athletes and their parents/guardians about this policy in the Agreement to Participate
or other written instrument that a student athlete and his or her parent/guardian must sign before the student is allowed to participate in a practice or interscholastic competition.
3. Provide coaches and student athletes and their parents/guardians with educational materials from the Illinois High School Association regarding the nature and risk of concussions and head injuries, including the risks inherent in continuing to play after a concussion or head injury.
4. Include a requirement for staff members to notify the parent/guardian of a student who exhibits symptoms consistent with that of a concussion
LEGAL REF.: 105 ILCS 5/10-20.53.
CROSS REF.: 4:170 (Safety), 7:300 (Extracurricular Athletics)