In 2022, the National Football League (NFL) reported an 18% increase in regular season concussions compared to the previous season, according to ESPN. This is a concerning trend highlighting the ongoing issue of traumatic brain injuries in football.
Contact sports and injuries
Traumatic brain injuries, or TBIs, are a serious concern in contact sports such as football. A jolt to the head disrupts the brain’s normal function. This disruption can cause many symptoms, including headaches, dizziness, confusion and even loss of consciousness. In football, these injuries can occur due to collisions between players or impact with the ground or other objects. According to the ESPN report, there were a total of 264 concussions reported in the NFL during the 2022 regular season, which is an alarming number.
Player and fan concerns about concussions
The increase in concussions is a cause for concern for players and fans of the sport. TBIs can have severe and long-lasting effects on a person’s health, including memory loss, mood changes and cognitive impairment. This is especially true for athletes at a higher risk for repeated head trauma. The ESPN report notes that many former NFL players have reported long-term health issues related to concussions and TBIs, including chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), a degenerative brain disease.
Investing in research for prevention and treatment
The NFL and other sports organizations have taken steps to address the issue of TBIs in football. This includes changes to the game’s rules, improved equipment, and increased awareness and education about the risks of head trauma. However, the increase in concussions in the 2022 season shows that more needs to happen to protect players from the dangers of TBIs. The NFL needs to continue investing in research and technology to prevent and treat these injuries.
Player techniques to mitigate or avoid injury
In addition, players, coaches, and fans can all play a role in addressing TBIs in football. Players can take steps to protect themselves, such as using proper techniques and reporting any symptoms of head trauma. Coaches can prioritize player safety and encourage a culture of awareness and prevention. Fans can also support players who suffer TBIs and advocate for improved safety measures. But, all stakeholders in the sport need to work together to promote awareness, prevention and treatment of TBIs.