A recent study found that concussions in children and young adults younger than 22 years old rose by 500 percent between 2000 to 2014. Yes, you read that right.
The study was conducted by FAIR Health, a national independent nonprofit organization dedicated to bringing transparency to healthcare costs and health insurance information. The researchers also found additional trends concerning concussion diagnoses:
- Most concussions occur in September and October, which is linked to the start of football season.
- High schoolers have the highest concussion rates.
- Boys generally have more concussions than girls, except in states where female sports are exceptionally popular.
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Although 500 percent is a jaw-dropping statistics, we have to understand it in a new context. Athletes continue to get stronger and faster, and any time they suffer head trauma, there’s a chance for a concussion. Also, we are getting significantly better at detecting concussions, and our increased awareness of their dangers no doubt increases the reporting of symptoms and the issuance of diagnoses.
So has the frequency of concussions increased by 500 percent in 14 years? Probably not. We’re just getting closer to reporting the actual number of concussions that occur.
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