The brain has an amazing amount of resiliency and can withstand more damage than you might think before a person shows functional changes. This is the organ that controls everything that our bodies can do. From controlling the beating of the heart, to muscle movement and hormonal fluctuations that control temperature and emotions the brain is central to all that makes us — us.
The brain is enclosed in a hard shell, our heads, and cushioned by blood and other structures. After undergoing an injury there are many blood vessels that can leak small amounts of blood. In this instance the blood takes up space inside the head that normally is used by the brain. If there is too much blood that leaks then the pressure inside the head will increase and place pressure on the brain. This pressure changes the function of the brain and in the worst case scenario can cause certain areas of the brain to die — leaving the individual with permanent loss of function for the rest of their lives.
When there is an injury on the sporting field or at play and parents or coaches believes someone may have had an injury to the head they should immediately arrange transportation to a hospital for evaluation.
Signs that a person has sustained an injury to their head that could result in bleeding in the brain:
- Loss of consciousness, even for a short time.
- Change in personality — becoming more aggressive or submissive
- Sensitivity to light
- Head came in forceful contact with a hard or stationary object
- Eyes don’t track together
- Eyesight is blurry
- The injured shakes their head to ‘clear it’ several times
- The injured feels like they are in a fog
Injuries to the neck or head require immediate attention by a medical professional.