Student Athletes Learn About Concussion Prevention and Proper Nutrition

Concussions aren’t just hitting football players. Recent statistics show that female athletes who play soccer, basketball and lacrosse are just as susceptible to this traumatic brain injury, usually caused by a blow to the head.

That’s the message delivered to more than 200 Our Lady of Lourdes Academy student-athletes, parents and coaches who came out to hear from Richard Hamilton, M.D., Clinical Director of the Brain Injury Program at Baptist Health Neuroscience Center, about preventing, treating and recovering from this serious condition.

At the symposium, hosted by Doctors Hospital Center for Orthopedics & Sports Medicine, Dr. Hamilton stressed the importance of the athletes “saying something” to their coaches or parents if they have been hit in the head, and feel or exhibit symptoms such as:

  • Vacant stare, appearing dazed or stunned.
  • Delayed verbal and motor responses.
  • Confusion and inability to focus attention.
  • Disorientation.
  • Slowed, slurred or incoherent speech.
  • Gross observable incoordination/balance.
  • Slowed reaction time.
  • Emotions out of proportion to circumstances.
  • Memory loss.
  • Loss of consciousness.
  • Headache.
  • Drowsiness.
  • Seeking immediate evaluation from a health care provider is essential to properly diagnosing and treating a concussion. More importantly, resting and recovering completely before returning to play can prevent more severe and lasting brain damage. Dr. Hamilton also supports schools, giving athletes a baseline neurocognitive assessment to have a reference point when the athlete suffers head trauma. Our Lady of Lourdes Academy Athletic Director Maura Herrholz said the baseline tests are provided for student athletes participating in contact sports.

    The athletes also learned about proper nutrition and hydration, from Lucette Talamas, Registered Dietician, Baptist Health-Community Health.

    On the minds of many in attendance–What to eat before a practice or game? Ms. Talamas spoke about healthy “backpack snacks” such as crackers and peanut butter or hummus with vegetables, that can be easily transported to a game or a practice field. To eat a balanced diet, she referred the athletes and their families to, which emphasizes meals that include servings from the fruit, vegetable, grains, protein and dairy groups.

    Another hot topic was hydration. Ms. Talamas urged the athletes to drink before, during and after workouts and games to keep their bodies functioning at an optimal level.

    Watch the video below to hear more of what Dr. Hamilton and Ms. Talamas had to say:

    Healthcare that Cares

    With internationally renowned centers of excellence, 12 hospitals, more than 27,000 employees, 4,000 physicians and 200 outpatient centers, urgent care facilities and physician practices spanning across Miami-Dade, Monroe, Broward and Palm Beach counties, Baptist Health is an anchor institution of the South Florida communities we serve.

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