BrainWorks: Kids & Sports-Related Concussions

[music]>>BrainWorks is made possible with generous
support provided by Seattle Children’s, delivering compassionate care while advancing new treatments
and cures through pediatric research. Learn more at [music]>>BrainWorks>>BrainWorks>>BrainWorks>>BrainWorks>>BrainWorks>>The show>>where we learn>>all about>>the brain.>>With me, Noggin’ the Brain.>>Dr. Chudler: In this episode, we learn all
about concussions and what every kid, parent, and coach needs to know. [music]>>Dr. Chudler: Hi! Welcome to BrainWorks.
My name is Eric Chudler. I’m a neuroscientist in the Department of Bioengineering at the
University of Washington. I’m also the executive director of the Center for Sensorimotor Neural
Engineering. What all of that means is that I’m really interested in learning about the
brain. [music]>>Ben: Hi! I’m Ben. Did you know that the
brain only weighs about 3 pounds?>>Pearl: Hi! I’m Pearl. Did you guys know
there are 100,000 miles of blood vessels in the brain?>>Micah: Hi! I’m Micah. Did you know that
the brain has about 100 billion nerve cells?>>Jannah: Hi! I’m Jannah. All those nerve
cells use electrical and chemical signals to talk to each other.>>Jaden: Hi! I’m Jaden. Guess what? A jellyfish
doesn’t even have a brain.>>Dr. Chudler: Here’s another brain fact.
Did you know that concussions are one of the most common kinds of brain injuries? In fact,
between 1.5 and 3.5 million people suffer sports-related concussions every year
in the United States.>>Noggin’: Concussions are no laughing matter
so we wanted to find out more. We’ll talk to an expert at Seattle Children’s Hospital,
we’ll run our own experiment, we’ll learn how to tell if you have a brain injury, we’ll
talk to someone who’s had a concussion, and we’ll find out how to keep our brain safe.
But first, we’re going to start with what we know.>>Dr. Chudler: How many of you know someone
who’s suffered a concussion?>>Micah: My brother had a concussion during
track. He was playing tag with some of his friends and they hit heads while they were
running. Afterwards, I remember he was really foggy and dizzy and confused.>>Dr. Chudler: Anybody else?>>Pearl: My sister was playing in a soccer
game and her and a member from another team went up for a header and they hit heads and
she had a minor concussion.>>Noggin’: Most people think that it’s only
in football that you get a concussion. Like tackling or two players hitting heads but
it’s fairly common in other sports.>>Jannah: You can get a concussion from skateboarding
or skiing or snowboarding or even playing basketball or volleyball.>>Ben: You can even get a concussion from
falling down while playing with friends. [music]>>Noggin’: Football has the most concussions
of any sport. Which sport comes in second? Girls Soccer, Boys Wrestling, or Boys Ice
Hockey? Stay tuned after the break to find out the
answer. [music]>>BrainWorks is made possible with generous
support provided by Seattle Children’s, delivering compassionate care while advancing new treatments
and cures through pediatric research. Learn more at [music]>>Noggin’: Football has the most concussions
of any sport. Which sport comes in second? Girls Soccer, Boys Wrestling, or Boys Ice
Hockey? The correct answer is boys ice hockey. We wanted to find out more about concussions
so we came to Seattle Children’s Hospital to talk to one of the leading experts in the
field. It’s Brainstorming time! [music]>>Dr. Chudler: So Dr. Browd, what exactly
is a concussion?>>Dr. Browd: A concussion is where your brain
moves within the skull. So when you’re moving quickly in one direction and all of a sudden
your body stops, the brain continues to move. I can show you guys on this model.>>Noggin’: What we learned from Dr. Browd
is that the brain doesn’t sit right up against the skull. It’s surrounded by spinal fluid. And inside the skull there are bumps and some
rough edges. If the brain gets knocked around, it can hit
some of those bumps.>>Dr. Browd: If it does it with enough force
then sometimes you can get a concussion.>>Jannah: So what happens right after you
get a concussion?>>Dr. Browd: Some people will immediately
get a headache. Some people will have loss of memory, they won’t know exactly where they
are.>>Noggin’: A concussion is basically like
a bruise on your brain. And if it’s serious, it can cause permanent damage.>>Dr. Browd: The other things we’ll do when
you’re on the sideline is we’ll check brain function. So we’ll see how your eyes move,
so if somebody’s just had a concussion and I’m having you do that, when you get out to
the very edge, your eyes will start to flutter like this. And that’s a pretty good sign that
they might have had a concussion. And those are people that we would say, you’re
done for the day.>>Jaden: Dr. Browd, can you tell us about
the high-tech helmets you are developing?>>Dr. Browd: We started to look at football
helmets. And football helmets go back about 100 years
and the first helmets were just leather and over time leather became plastic. Even in the last 20 years there hasn’t been
a lot of change in the way the helmets have been made and working with some very brilliant
engineers and the mechanical engineering department at the University and we’ve developed a new
helmet. And we’ve been able to take the technology outside of the University and are starting
to build up a company that is called VICIS to make these football helmets. And we think
the helmet, it’ll demonstrate it in the lab, it absorbs more force.>>Jaden: Thank you for taking your time to
share with us Dr. Browd.>>Dr. Browd: It’s my pleasure and welcome
back anytime. Thank you, nice to meet you, thank you. [music]>>Noggin’: Concussions can happen in all kinds
of situations. So how do we know if someone has one? Next we speak to a specialist who teaches
us what to look for.>>Dr. Chudler: In 2009, the State of Washington
was the first in the country to pass a sports-related concussion law. It’s called the Zachary Lystedt law.>>Pearl: Which means, if a player gets a concussion,
they must see a medical professional before entering back into the game.>>Ben: We talked to Andrew Little who is from
the Seattle Children’s Hospital.>>Dr. Chudler: Hi Andrew! What is it about
concussions that parents, players, and coaches should look out for when a player suffers
a head injury?>>Andrew: Yeah, the Zachary Lystedt law is
such a, it’s such an important law. It was passed years ago and it’s, it’s about creating
awareness about brain injury. It’s about creating awareness about a situation that could happen
and we want to make sure that sports are safe for everybody. We want to make sure that even a slight jolting
blow to the head, or to the neck, or to the body, any of that can be a concussion. But
we want to make sure that we create awareness and that everybody is safe in sports.>>Dr. Chudler: We’ve got Micah over here.
And what we’d like you to do with Micah is just pretend that Micah maybe was playing
soccer and he bumped heads with someone else, another player. How would you diagnose whether
he should keep on playing the game or whether he should come out of the game? How would
you diagnose if he’s had a concussion?>>Andrew: Well the most important thing to
notice and to follow when evaluating for concussion is we want to make sure we recognize the situation. The first thing that I always ask all of our
little kiddos and all of our kids that have suffered any type of injuries is Do you remember
what happened?>>Micah: Well, I was playing soccer and I
hit heads with somebody else.>>Andrew: And how are you feeling right now?>>Micah: I have a little bit of a headache.>>Andrew: You have a little bit of a headache.
So on a scale of 0 to 6, 6 being like the worst thing you can think of, that’s a severe.
A 4 and a 5 are pretty moderate. 1 or 2 are kind of mild. You said you had a headache,
how would rate that 0 to 6?>>Micah: A 2.>>Andrew: 2. And do you have any pressure
in your head?>>Micah: Yeah.>>Andrew: Yeah. Is it in that same spot or
is it in a different spot?>>Micah: It’s in the same spot.>>Andrew: Ok. And do you have any neck pain
or anything?>>Micah: No.>>Andrew: Ok. Do you notice any sensitivity
to light? It’s not a really bright day today but is there any problem with that?>>Micah: No.>>Dr. Chudler: So with the symptoms that he’s
presented here, would you recommend that he sit out of the game?>>Andrew: Yeah. Anytime that an athlete presents in this type
of a situation, they’re immediately removed from play. What I want you to try to do is focus your
eyes just on my finger…>>Noggin’: So once Andrew determined Micah
had a concussion, he then gave him a balance test>>Andrew: Is that bothering you at all today?
Did that make your headache worse?>>Noggin’: An eye test, and a memory test.>>Andrew: Elbow, Apple, Carpet, Saddle, Bubble.
List the words back.>>Micah: Elbow, Apple, Carpet, Saddle, Bubble.>>Andrew: We’re gonna do it two more times.>>Ben: Thank you for teaching us more about
concussions Andrew.>>Andrew: Thank you for having me.>>Noggin’: Dr. Browd talked to us about how
important it was to wear helmets to protect our brain. We wanted to test it out for ourselves.>>Dr. Chudler: We’re going to do an experiment
just to show how essential they are.>>Pearl: We’re calling it our egghead experiment.>>Jaden: We’re going to pretend that these
eggs are our heads and that the eggs inside are our brain. The question now is how to protect them?>>Micah: We’ve got a box full of recycled
materials. Let’s see what we can build.>>Ben: No problem. I’m going to use this bubble
wrap and that paper towel.>>Jannah: I’m going to use the bubble wrap
and the carton of milk. [dinging bell and whistle]>>Dr. Chudler: Eggs-ellent idea Pearl! [music]>>Micah: Done! [music]>>Noggin’: Stay tuned! Later in the show we’ll
find out how our eggs did during our experiment.>>Micah: As we’ve heard, wearing a helmet
is very important.>>Pearl: And what’s just as important, is
making sure that helmet fits properly.>>Jaden: Still to come on BrainWorks, we find
out how to make sure that our helmets fit correctly. [music]>>Noggin’: How many children are seen daily
in emergency rooms for sports-related injuries? 8,000 800 or 80,000 Stay tuned after the break to find out the
answer. [music]>>BrainWorks is made possible with generous
support provided by Seattle Children’s, delivering compassionate care while advancing new treatments
and cures through pediatric research. Learn more at [music]>>Noggin’: How many children are seen daily
in emergency rooms for sports-related injuries? 8,000 800 or 80,000 The answer is 8,000. [dinging bell]>>Noggin’: Now we know what causes a concussion
but what does it feel like to have one? We wanted to talk with someone who’s had one
to help us understand better.>>Dr. Chudler: Hi Leslie! My name’s Eric Chudler.
Welcome to BrainWorks! You’re a head coach of the women’s soccer team here at the University
of Washington.>>Leslie: I am. 22 years and counting.>>Dr. Chudler: So what’s it like dealing with
a player that’s suffered a head injury on the field?>>Leslie: It’s always a little bit frightening
to be honest. A head injury or a spinal injury are probably the two worst injuries you could
have in any sport or any activities. So you have to treat them with extra care and caution
and we certainly follow that protocol here at the UW.>>Dr. Chudler: Do they take them out of the
game immediately? Exactly what happens during play?>>Leslie: It depends. First of all the officials
on the field are very well versed, especially in this day and age. They have become more
educated on head injuries. And any time there is even a head-to-head contact or a player
hits their head on the ground, goal post, or a ball hits them in the head, they call
time out immediately and they will bring our trainer onto the field. [whistle]>>Noggin’: Time out! Let’s go over that again. Here are some of the reasons you can be taken
out of play during soccer: Head-to-Head Head-to-Goal post Head-to-Ground and Head-to-Ball Sometimes soccer balls can hit players’ heads
at speeds of 63 mph. That’s a fast ball. And, the American Academy of Pediatrics found
that contact that happens during soccer play is at the same level as boxing football ice hockey lacrosse rodeo, wrestling, and field hockey. Now let’s head back to the coach!>>Dr. Chudler: I know that you’ve brought
one of your ex-players to BrainWorks. Sara, come on over. So we understand that while you were playing
you suffered a couple of concussions.>>Sara: Mmmhmm. I did.>>Dr. Chudler: What did it actually feel like
when you were playing and what actually happened?>>Sara: So the interesting thing about concussions
is as a player you almost feel like you’re kind of okay because you don’t see blood,
you don’t see, your bones don’t hurt but you just kind of feel a little off. So, especially as you get more and more competitive,
it’s really hard to realize that you know, my brain is not working right, I feel a little
fuzzy, I feel a little dizzy. So that’s kind of what the important part of the trainers
and the coaching staff is.>>Dr. Chudler: And we heard from coach that’s
sometimes players go head-to-head or head-to-goal post or head-to-ground. In your case, what
was the contact?>>Sara: Umm, mine was a lot of head-to-ball
or arm-to-head. Never really, a little head-to-head, but never really head-to-post. Umm, It was just kind of a thing that a lot
of times it happened over and over again so it lead to that sort of big, big hit, big
concussion.>>Dr. Chudler: And when you came out, did
you stay out for weeks, or days, or?>>Sara: Yeah, there was umm a period of time
where I was out for a few weeks actually. And then there was period of time where I
was out for a couple of months so umm it just depended on the severity of it and kind of
how quickly my symptoms went away.>>Jaden: What does it feel like to have a
concussion?>>Sara: You just sort of feel off. Everything’s
moving a little slow. You’re kind of reacting to things a little bit differently. Sometimes you have a pretty bad headache but
that’s not always a necessity for a concussion but it usually goes with it. You just feel
a little slow.>>Dr. Chudler: So you had a lot of rest to
help you recover?>>Sara: Yeah, I actually missed a couple of
weeks of class. Pretty much the advice I got was go in your
room, turn the light off and rest cause just like anything your brain needs rest so you
just try to sleep as much as possible and keep the screen time to minimum or nothing
depending on the severity of it.>>Dr. Chudler: Well, thank you very much for
joining us Coach! Thank you Sara! [alarm sound]>>Dr. Chudler: Looks like everyone built the
helmet to protect their egg brain. Let’s see how it would’ve protected a real brain first. So our helmets are all built now. Now it’s
time to test ’em to see if they actually protected the brain inside. Jaden, there goes yours. That didn’t sound so good. Whose is this?>>Ben: That one’s mine.>>Jannah: Mine!>>Dr. Chudler: Jannah, here goes yours. And how ’bout this one?>>Micah: Mine.>>Dr. Chudler: Here goes yours Micah. And last but not least, whose is this?>>Pearl: Mine.>>Dr. Chudler: Here goes Pearl’s. Let’s go check them out.>>Ben: Oh no! Aaah!>>Jaden: Mine wins!>>Dr. Chudler: Good job! Eggs-ellent everyone! Eggs-ellent! [music]>>Noggin’: After our experiment showed us
how important it is to have head protection, we decided we needed to get some helmet tips.>>Dr. Chudler: We’re here at the Cascade Bicycle
club. We wanted to start right at the top. How do you properly fit a bicycle helmet? We’re here with Khatsini Simani, a certified
bicycle instructor who works with the Cascade Bicycle Club. Welcome to BrainWorks.>>Khatsini: Welcome! Thank you!>>Jannah: Hi! Nice to meet you! So, how do I know if my helmet fits correctly?>>Khatsini: That’s a great question. The first
thing you want to do is make sure that your helmet is the correct size. Secondly, you want to make sure that you are
putting it on to your head properly. So of course you want it to be forward like
so and there’s an adjustment dial in the back. Often times helmets will have an adjustment
dial just to make sure that you get the right fit for your helmet. So this one, right is tight, left is loose.
So I’m going to go ahead and tighten the dial all the way to the right like so, so it’s
snug on your head. So if you were to bend over while just the
adjustment dial is tightened, your helmet should not be able to fall off. That’s how
you know it’s on snuggly. So the first way to know that your helmet
is on correctly is you look up with your eyes and make sure you can see the edge of your
helmet right there. Can you see it?>>Jannah: Yeah.>>Khatsini: Awesome! So that way you know
that your helmet is far enough down your forehead so that it will protect your forehead in the
case of a crash or collision. The second thing you want to do is make sure
that the side-straps are adjusted right beneath your earlobes. If your hair is covering your ears or you
have a scarf, as you do, you can put your fingers right beneath your earlobes so the
fitter knows, alright, both straps should be right beneath the earlobes. That way we make sure your helmet won’t shift
from side to side. The very last thing we do is check to make
sure your strap is adjusted correctly. So go ahead and buckle your strap. There is a chin guard there so you won’t get
pinched. There you go! And you shouldn’t be able to put your whole
hand in there. So if you try and get just a few fingers in There you go. That’s how you know its snug
enough. You can also check by opening up your mouth
and if you can feel your two straps pulling down, you know its snug enough.>>Ben: How do I know if my helmet’s the right
size?>>Khatsini: That’s a great question. So helmets
come in lots of different sizes and when I’m fitting a helmet for someone, I like to eyeball
their head and think about what helmet should I grab and try and fit on top of them. One important thing to note is that everybody’s
head is shaped differently so it’s hard to guess right off the bat what size will fit
you. It’s important when you’re fitting a helmet
for the person to be there so that you have the exact fit that they need.>>Jaden: Where can I buy a helmet?>>Khatsini: That’s a great question too. So
when you’re thinking about buying a helmet, first things first, you want to buy one that’s
new. And the reason for that is if you buy a used
helmet, you have no idea what the person went through with that helmet. It could have gotten in a crash or the safety
of it could have been compromised. So when you get a new helmet, you want to
make sure it’s certified by either CPSC which is an acronym for the Consumer Product Safety
Commission or ASTM which stands for American Society
of Testing & Materials. And those are professionals who know that
the helmet is safe for you to wear. [music]>>Dr. Chudler: Thanks for joining us here
at BrainWorks! I think we’ve all learned a lot about concussions.>>Ben: Yep! We’ve learned that concussions
are a serious brain injury that can seriously effect young growing brains.>>Pearl: If you think you have a concussion,
please seek medical attention.>>Jannah: And remember, recovery time can
range from days to weeks to even months so don’t rush it.>>Jaden: Thank you for joining us. We’ll see
you next time for BrainWorks.>>Dr. Chudler: See you! Remember, protect
it! It’s the only one you’ve got! [music]

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