Sport Related Concussions More Common In High School Girls


Many would expect football to be a common contact sport with concussions, but they don't all happen on the field.

A new study showed girl athletes, notably cheerleaders, suffered worse and longer when it came to concussions.

Coach Stacy Burton, with the South Doyle cheer team, said, "There are times when concussions do happen with the girls."

A cheerleader at South Doyle High School suffered one just last year. She wasn't alone, according to a new study that said cheer leading caused more concussions in girls than any other sport.

Dr. Joshua Johnson, with Knoxville Orthopedic Clinic, said, "For cheerleaders, you don't have a helmet, and it's really just being aware of your surroundings like watching people as they're falling."

And with girls, the concussion could last twice as long.

"Male athletes return to athletic activity a lot faster than female athletes do," Dr. Johnson said.

Symptoms last about three weeks, but they won't develop for 24 to 48 hours after a head injury. It's one reason experts reminded parents to watch their kids.

Dr. Johnson recommended parents "Be really diligent about watching an athlete after they sustain a head injury."

Symptoms could include headaches, trouble sleeping, anxiety or depression, and difficulty in school.

"Say they're a straight 'A' student, and get a math test back and get a 70 on it," Dr. Johnson said. "Starting to look at, why are they having trouble cognitively?"

The South Doyle cheer team practices to prevent dangerous falls.

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