Concussion awareness needed; Only 41% of students say they could recognise the signs

Concussion awareness needed; Only 41% of students say they could recognise the signs
Republic of Ireland’s Seamus Coleman with Jacob (6) and Joshua Ellis (8) along with Dublin footballers Johnny Cooper and Kate Keaney and rugby star Luke Fitzgerald.

Headway, the brain injury services and support organisation, has conducted national research at a school level in the area of concussion, having last month teamed up with Ireland’s leading GAA, soccer and rugby player unions to launch Concussion Aware, a campaign in association with laya healthcare and supported by Life Style Sports.

Only 41% of school pupils believe they could recognise the signs of a concussion, according to the latest survey for Headway carried out by Amárach Research. This represents yet another demonstration of the lack of knowledge and awareness young people have in understanding concussion and head injuries.

This confusion is further highlighted by the fact that two thirds of students surveyed do not know that a concussion can be sustained even if the individual does not fall unconscious, a common misconception. Furthermore, 76% of students think that a concussion is sustained from a bang to the head alone, again conveying misperceptions of the signs and symptoms of concussion injuries.

#ConcussionAware, backed by Ireland’s top sports stars, is calling for schools and clubs nationwide to ensure adequate procedures are in place to deal with concussion injuries and is based on the simple message: “If in doubt, sit it out.”

The student survey findings also raise concern for the adequacy of the procedures currently in place in local schools and sports clubs to deal with a concussion. A mere 30% of students feel that the protocols in practice are sufficient to deal with such an injury.

In a match setting, 22% of students said they would continue to play on unless told otherwise, despite having sustained a blow to the head or body and while feeling dizzy or unbalanced.

Headway are urging athletes of all levels nationwide to show their support of Concussion Aware by wearing uniquely designed elite performance bootlaces on sale in Life Style stores nationwide and online, the perfect stocking-filler for Christmas.

100% of the proceeds go directly to Headway and to raising further awareness of the dangers of concussion.

For further information and for the full survey results, visit and check out the campaign on Headway Ireland’s Facebook where you can download your personalised Concussion Aware frame to show your support.

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