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News Release

Health Department raises awareness on preventing concussion-related injuries

WHITBY, ON October 30, 2014

Durham Region Health Department is launching a public awareness campaign to highlight concussion prevention among youth 14 to 19-years old. The campaign, which will run throughout November and December, will include advertising across Durham Region, as well as messages posted on social media sites.

“A concussion is a brain injury that is caused by a bump or blow to the head or body that causes the brain to move rapidly inside the skull; all concussions are serious,” explains Yemisi Aladesua, a public health nurse with the Health Department. “Statistics have shown that incidents of concussions are on the rise and often occur in youth who play sports.”

Research indicates that the rate of concussion-related emergency room visits has been increasing since 2008. In addition, youth accounted for the largest proportion of concussion-related emergency room visits or hospitalizations in Durham Region, with concussion occurring more often in males.

Ms. Aladesua notes that certain sports have been found to put individuals at higher risk for concussions. These sports include football, rugby, hockey, soccer and boxing.

Prevention is the key treatment for concussion-related injuries. In order to reduce the risk of concussions, youth are encouraged to: 

  • Play fair and show respect to other players.
  • Play within the rules of the sport and within their abilities.
  • Wear the right protective gear, which fits properly and is well maintained.
  • Make sure that there is nothing that can cause a trip in the area where the sport is being played.
  • Follow their sports organization’s concussion policy.

Most people with a concussion can recover quickly and fully; however, for some people, symptoms can last for days, weeks or longer. Individuals who have had a concussion in the past are also at risk of having another and may take longer to recover. Repeat concussions are serious and may require the individual to alter their level of participation in a sport or stop playing the sport altogether.

Individuals who have had a concussion are encouraged to take enough time to rest and heal, and to follow the “Return to Learn Guidelines” and “Return to Play Guidelines”.

For more information on preventing concussions, please call Durham Health Connection Line at 905-666-6241 or 1 800 841 2729.

Media inquiries:

The Regional Municipality of Durham:

Glendene Collins – Health Department, 905-668-7711 ext. 2999

If this information is required in an accessible format, please contact the Accessibility Co-ordinator at 1-800-372-1102 extension 2009.

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For more information, please contact Health Department.