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Concussion

A relatively minor impact can cause a concussion. It's very important that you know how to recognise when an impact may result in a concussion, recognise when a concussion may have occurred, recognise red flags were immediate referral to a doctor is necessary, and know how to assist an athlete returning to sport after a concussion.

Important!

Minor impacts can cause concussion

A relatively minor impact can cause a concussion.  The impact does not need to occur with a person's head.  A concussion can result from an impact to the head, neck or body.

Concussions do happen in volleyball

Concussions in volleyball are an all too common occurrence. According to a 2015 study in PT in Motion News, volleyball players report a rate of 3.57 concussions per 10,000 exposures. An exposure is equivalent to one practice or one match.

See the source

Sit them out for 10 minutes

Easts policy requires any player involved in any impact that could results in a concussion to 'sit out' for at least 10 minutes.

No exceptions.

Being aware of concussion

It's important that not only coaches know about concussion.  Players and parents/guardians/trusted adults are also aware of the signs and symptoms of concussion because these signs and symptoms can take up to 48 hours to appear.

Concussion, also known as mild traumatic brain injury, is a type of brain injury that can result from a forceful impact to the head, neck, or body, which causes the brain to move within the skull.

All coaches must complete the Connectivity Concussion Short Course.  We also highly recommend that all players and their parents also complete this training.

Impacts that may result in concussion
Red flags

Common impacts where a concussion may result include:

  • Being hit in the head with a ball

  • Colliding with another player where the upper body is involved

  • Being hit by another player's arm when blocking

  • Falls

  • Colliding with the net posts

Red flags are signs and symptoms that require immediate medical attention.

Signs - things you can see
  • Severe or increasing headache

  • Loss of consciousness or deteriorating conscious state

  • Seizure or convulsion

  • Repeated vomiting

  • Blurred or double vision/changes in vision

  • Continual bleeding from ear or nose

 
Symptoms - things the person says they are feeling
  • Neck pain or tenderness

  • Weakness or inability to move the body as usual

  • Sensations of numbness, tingling or burning in arms or legs

  • Increased confusion, agitation, or restlessness

 

What to do

Advise the player (assist them if necessary) to go to the nearest doctor, nearest hospital, or telephone an ambulance

Coaches

Ensure that you complete an incident report for all impacts that may result in a concussion.

The incident report is available in the Easts App.

'If in doubt, sit them out.'

Common signs & symptoms

The signs and symptoms of concussion may appear at the time of the injury, or they may develop and/or get worse in the hours or days that follow.

Immediate Signs - things you can see
  • No protective action when falling

  • Lying motionless

  • Slow to get up

  • Stumbling

  • Balance problems or poor coordination

You may see the person:

  • Grab or hold their head

  • Look dazed or vacant

  • Appear confused or drowsy

  • Slurred or incoherent speech

  • Repeat questions

 
Immediate Symptoms - things the person says they are feeling
  • Headache or pressure in their head

  • Dizziness

  • Changes in vision (e.g., double vision, blurred vision, worsening vision or “seeing stars”)

  • Confusion

  • Memory loss (amnesia)

  • Increased irritability, frustration

  • Feeling tired or drowsy

  • Not feeling right

  • Nausea

 
What to do

If any of these signs and symptoms are present, the player must immediately stop all activity.

  • Contact their parent or emergency contact and advise that you suspect the player has sustained a concussion

  • Advise them of the signs that you have observed and/or symptoms that the player has reported

  • Tell them that they should take the player home and rest (do not let the player drive themselves home)

  • Advise them to go to this website - connectivity.org.au - and look for the Fact Sheet, specifically what to do in the 24-48 hours after a concussion

  • Advise them to call 13 HEALTH if they have any concerns

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