geldefender® Blog

  • Study says bike helmets reduce risk of serious head injury by 65%

    A new study says that helmets reduce the risks of serious head injury for cyclists by about 65%.

     

    The Australian statisticians who conducted the study of over 64,000 bicycle riders were looking for answers for the critics of Australia’s compulsory helmet use law. The argument against the law – that helmets discourage potential future riders from cycling – pales next such a safety statistics.

     

    If this new study is accurate, then common sense should prevail, not just for Australia but for every cyclist the world over. Heads are too precious a commodity to risk them unnecessarily, and bike helmets are an easy way to protect them against harm. Nearly 70% less chance of serious harm is definitely worth the inconvenience.

     

    *Scientists have no conclusive evidence as to whether or how the reduction of g-forces during impacts reduces the number or degree of concussions and head injuries. GelDefender products provide supplemental padding as well as cooling and comfort benefits when used with helmets and caps. Participants in activities in which head impacts can occur should always use tested and approved helmets for protection. However, no helmet or supplemental padding can protect the user from all serious head or neck injuries that can result from impacts.

  • Torii Hunter Jr.'s comments about his concussion very concerning

    No matter how far we’ve come in concussions awareness, there’s always far to go still.

     

    Notre Dame’s Torii Hunter Jr. made that clear this week when he casually said of his recent concussion, “It was my first one that I've told them about, or that they've known about.”

     

     

    The implication, of course, is that there have been others but that he never bothered to do anything about them. Furthermore, his words imply that nobody else noticed any of his possible concussions before. The difference in this instance was that he actually lost consciousness on the field, so self-reporting was moot.

     

    That there are still players who ignore concussion symptoms, who speak of getting evaluated and treated for such as though it’s the exception rather than the rule, shows just how far we have to go in concussion awareness. Head injuries are incredibly serious matters, and impressing on players just how serious they are needs to be a priority for every league, team, and parent.

     

    *Scientists have no conclusive evidence as to whether or how the reduction of g-forces during impacts reduces the number or degree of concussions and head injuries. GelDefender products provide supplemental padding as well as cooling and comfort benefits when used with helmets and caps. Participants in activities in which head impacts can occur should always use tested and approved helmets for protection. However, no helmet or supplemental padding can protect the user from all serious head or neck injuries that can result from impacts.

  • NFLPA sends concussion education video to players

    The NFL Players Association has compiled a concussion education video and sent a copy to every player in the NFL in preparation for the 2016 season.

     

    The NFLPA, along with the American Academy of Neurology, made the video which details the effects of a concussion on the brain, typical symptoms, and the protocol that teams and players must follow in the event of a potential concussion. The responsibility of the player to report his own symptoms or suspicions and the consequences of failing to do so is particularly emphasized.

     

    This initiative, along with the NFL’s plans to penalize the protocol’s non-conformers, will hopefully help in curbing much of the league’s concussion problem. These steps and similar ones in sports organizations throughout the world are important elements in improving concussion prevention, detection, and treatment for the future.

     

    *Scientists have no conclusive evidence as to whether or how the reduction of g-forces during impacts reduces the number or degree of concussions and head injuries. GelDefender products provide supplemental padding as well as cooling and comfort benefits when used with helmets and caps. Participants in activities in which head impacts can occur should always use tested and approved helmets for protection. However, no helmet or supplemental padding can protect the user from all serious head or neck injuries that can result from impacts.

  • Playing through a concussion could double recovery time

    Concussion victims could take twice as long to recover if they continue physical activity after the injury, a new study says.

     

    The study found that the average recovery time in student athletes who played through a concussion (for an average of 19 minutes) was 44 days, whereas those who left play immediately only took an average of 22 days to recover. Tests given both a week and a month after a concussion also showed that continuing play led to impaired mental function.

     

    While most athletes, parents, and coaches know about the long-term dangers of traumatic brain injuries by this point, concussions are still mishandled in many cases. But with this evidence that a mere 20 extra minutes in a game after a concussion could lead to more than 20 extra days benched, perhaps the players will be a little more cautious. If the long-term consequences of ignoring concussions aren’t motivation enough, hopefully the short-term play time loss will be.

     

    *Scientists have no conclusive evidence as to whether or how the reduction of g-forces during impacts reduces the number or degree of concussions and head injuries. GelDefender products provide supplemental padding as well as cooling and comfort benefits when used with helmets and caps. Participants in activities in which head impacts can occur should always use tested and approved helmets for protection. However, no helmet or supplemental padding can protect the user from all serious head or neck injuries that can result from impacts.

  • Football season's starting, so watch out for your heads!

    The NFL preseason is underway, and eight professional football players are currently in the league’s concussion protocol.

     

    The season hasn’t truly begun, but already these men (and quite a few others who’ve gone through the protocol and been cleared already) have suffered concussions. These are the first of the doubtless scores to come as the year progresses.

     

     

    Football is dangerous, and it’s particularly dangerous to your head. That’s not a secret, but it is worth repeating as a new season is getting started. So whether you’re playing football or another sport this fall, be careful, and be sure to look out for your brain. You only get one.

     

    *Scientists have no conclusive evidence as to whether or how the reduction of g-forces during impacts reduces the number or degree of concussions and head injuries. GelDefender products provide supplemental padding as well as cooling and comfort benefits when used with helmets and caps. Participants in activities in which head impacts can occur should always use tested and approved helmets for protection. However, no helmet or supplemental padding can protect the user from all serious head or neck injuries that can result from impacts.

  • Is Ellie Downie's perseverance really a success story?

    The first week of the Olympics is over, the second has begun, and the world’s eyes are fixed on Rio and the athletes that have congregated there. One of the defining characteristics of Olympians is their incredible drive to succeed, to win, to power through obstacles.

     

    That drive was never more apparent than when British gymnast Ellie Downie fell hard on her head and neck during her floor routine for the qualification round. Afterward, she got up and tried to continue for a few seconds before conceding that she couldn’t continue, stepping out of bounds and shaking her head with a dazed look on her face.

     

     

    She was helped off and evaluated, but she was supposed to be back in action almost immediately. Her symptoms were heavily indicative of some sort of head injury, and doctors recommended she not to do the two vaults she was due to complete.

     

    But she did anyway. She vaulted twice to help her team qualify, and then she competed again for the team finals.

     

    In most sports and at most levels, such fall would have immediately forced the athlete in question to be evaluated for a concussion, and an athlete who shared Downie’s symptoms would have almost certainly been taken out of competition. But even if the athlete was deemed fit enough to return, the decision would not have been made by the athlete; it would have been made by medical personnel.

     

    The stage doesn’t get any bigger or the pressure more tangible than at the Olympics. Downie has been praised for her determination and spirit, and her perseverance through the injury certainly was a testament to her mettle. Especially when considering the other women on her team counting on her performance to continue to the finals, her actions could be seen as noble.

     

    But should we be treating this as a success story? Downie was very likely concussed, and by now we know how dangerous continuing physical activity with a concussion can be. Even if she was healthy, she made the decision to continue against advice from her coach and medical staff. Is this the something we want the next generation of athletes to aspire to? Ellie Downie’s courage, while admirable, is not the point; the example she is setting for the rest of the world is.

     

    *Scientists have no conclusive evidence as to whether or how the reduction of g-forces during impacts reduces the number or degree of concussions and head injuries. GelDefender products provide supplemental padding as well as cooling and comfort benefits when used with helmets and caps. Participants in activities in which head impacts can occur should always use tested and approved helmets for protection. However, no helmet or supplemental padding can protect the user from all serious head or neck injuries that can result from impacts.

  • Earnhardt Jr. candidly sheds light on his concussion recovery

    Of the several high-profile concussions in the news recently, none have made headlines quite like race car driver Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s.

     

     

    Earnhardt has already missed every race since his July 12 concussion and will continue to miss for at least two more weeks. He’s still wrestling with balance and sight problems as well as nausea.

     

    He has been incredibly open and honest about his injury and recovery, discussing his treatment and personal feelings in-depth on his podcast “The Dale Jr. Download” and thereby showcasing how detrimental concussions can be. "This is scary for me because of the way it's been different,” he recently said. “I'm having balance issues. I've never had balance issues before. "

     

    His continual candidness has brought the public’s attention to what concussion victims can go through as well as the importance of allowing oneself time to heal, despite strong impatience to return to normal routines. He has done what few still-active athletes have been willing to – giving a glimpse into his time of weakness – and in the process has shed new light on the seriousness of concussions.

     

    *Scientists have no conclusive evidence as to whether or how the reduction of g-forces during impacts reduces the number or degree of concussions and head injuries. GelDefender products provide supplemental padding as well as cooling and comfort benefits when used with helmets and caps. Participants in activities in which head impacts can occur should always use tested and approved helmets for protection. However, no helmet or supplemental padding can protect the user from all serious head or neck injuries that can result from impacts.

  • NHL commissioner disputes link between concussion and CTE

    When the NFL's senior vice president for health and safety publicly recognized the link between concussions and CTE, it seemed that the last hold-out against the two’s correlation had finally conceded that battle. After, all, no one had as much to lose from the discovery as the NFL, so with the league’s public acknowledgement the matter was considered settled.

     

    Until NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman spoke out this week. He claimed, “The science regarding CTE, including on the asserted ‘link’ to concussions . . . remains nascent, particularly with respect to what causes CTE.” He went on to claim that a link between concussions and CTE “has not been demonstrated” and that the relationship between the two “remains unknown.”

     

    His 24-page statement was a response to Senator Richard Blumenthal, who had questioned him about long-term head injury dangers. His choice of words may have influenced somewhat by the lawsuit that 105 former NHL players have filed against the league.

     

    He’s reopened a debate that seemed more or less closed, rehashing old arguments that the NFL staunchly defended for years before changing its tune in March. His remarks represent a step back in the dialogue, but what we really need is forward movement in the prevention, detection, and treatment of both concussions and CTE. Our energy should be focused on solving the problems that concussions present; arguing about whether they exist does nothing but drag us backward.

     

    *Scientists have no conclusive evidence as to whether or how the reduction of g-forces during impacts reduces the number or degree of concussions and head injuries. GelDefender products provide supplemental padding as well as cooling and comfort benefits when used with helmets and caps. Participants in activities in which head impacts can occur should always use tested and approved helmets for protection. However, no helmet or supplemental padding can protect the user from all serious head or neck injuries that can result from impacts.

  • Widespread concussion problem in synchronized swimming needs an answer

    It’s no secret that concussions and football have become practically synonymous in recent years. Now, the attention has inspired scrutiny of lesser-known sports for similar problems. The trend’s newest sport? Synchronized swimming.

     

    The New York Times recent reported that at least 50 percent of synchronized swimmers are estimated to have sustained a concussion, though that may be a gross underestimation. Myriam Glez, chief executive of the sport’s national organizing body, told the NYT that it’s likely that every single one has been concussed at some point. It’s difficult for swimmers underwater to protect their heads from all angles in such tight formations, so crashing into one another is a regular occurrence.

     

    The sport is peripheral in the public’s awareness at best, so it’s no surprise that such a widespread and dangerous problem has flown under the radar thus far. But now that it’s been noticed, it’s crucial that a solution be found. Concussions should be a rarity in any sport, but in synchronized swimming it seems to be the rule. It’s time for that to change.

     

    *Scientists have no conclusive evidence as to whether or how the reduction of g-forces during impacts reduces the number or degree of concussions and head injuries. GelDefender products provide supplemental padding as well as cooling and comfort benefits when used with helmets and caps. Participants in activities in which head impacts can occur should always use tested and approved helmets for protection. However, no helmet or supplemental padding can protect the user from all serious head or neck injuries that can result from impacts.

  • One in three water polo players suffer concussions, survey says

    A recent survey suggests that more than one in three water polo players have suffered concussions during games or practice.

     

    According to the poll conducted by UC Irvine, goalies in particular are at risk, with 47 percent reporting having received concussions. Additionally, more women reported at least one concussion than men (43.5 percent and 30.8 percent respectively of the 1,500 who completed the survey).

     

    Since water polo boasts fewer athletes than football or hockey, it is often overlooked, resulting in less attention to the wellbeing of its players. But clearly concussions are more prevalent in the sport than was previously realized. If a third of the players sustain concussions (to say nothing of those who weren’t diagnosed), better head protection and safer play strategies need to be implemented, and those involved need to learn how to spot and properly handle concussions once they occur.

     

    This survey is a wake-up call; water polo as a sport needs to heed it.

     

    *Scientists have no conclusive evidence as to whether or how the reduction of g-forces during impacts reduces the number or degree of concussions and head injuries. GelDefender products provide supplemental padding as well as cooling and comfort benefits when used with helmets and caps. Participants in activities in which head impacts can occur should always use tested and approved helmets for protection. However, no helmet or supplemental padding can protect the user from all serious head or neck injuries that can result from impacts.

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