Wake Up —a Reasonable Return For more information about the Wake Up to Concussion! to Riding management of concussion in Recovery and management of concussion sport, contact or log on to: should follow physicians’ instructions. The following are recommendations for “return Brain Injury Association Photo courtesy of Patricia Maykuth to play” in equestrian sports. • (800) 444-6442 How long should the rider wait before riding again after a concussion?* • www.headinjury.com • Green Light – same day, only if no Key • firstname.lastname@example.org Signs or Symptoms after waiting 15 minutes • Centers for Disease Control www.cdc.gov/ncip/tbi • Yellow Light – 5-7 days after there are no Key Signs/Symptoms both at rest and during exertion, and being • USEA Safety Committee This brochure is to help people in the medically cleared by physician. Loss of concussion@equestriansafety horse sports to recognize concussion in the field so that medical assess- to CONCUSSION consciousness or more serious concussion may require two weeks or .com. ment and management can be pur- more free of Key Signs or Symptoms. sued. The most common head injury in sport is concussion. Photo courtesy of United States Pony Clubs, inc. • Red Light — After multiple concussions, Each rider is different and has an in- Riding of any kind – not just it may be necessary for the rider to dividual medical history. The informa- tion presented here should be used jumping, ranks third in the discontinue the sport for the season. In rare occasions, the rider may need to for guidelines. Diagnosis can be number of concussions reconsider the sport. made only by medical professionals. sustained by adults. This brochure is designed to help Remember, all concussions count – it riders recognize mild doesn’t matter if traumas to the head concussion in the field so are caused by falls from horses, car that appropriate medical accidents, other sports related injuries such as skiing or soccer, whiplash, or assessment and falls against a hard surface like the management can follow. floor, a rock or a tree. Sponsored through partnership of: American Medical Equestrian Association-Safe Riders Foundation www.ameaonline.org * Personal medical history or other TM conditions may indicate a longer waiting period. United States Eventing Association www.eventingusa.org It’s no joke. Be Smart! Ride Safe. United States Equestrian Federation www.usef.org WHAT IF THERE IS ANY LOSS OF What are some Key Signs and Know your Green/Red/Yellow CONSCIOUSNESS, even for a few What is Concussion? Symptoms of Concussion? Lights. seconds? • Feeling like “you had your bell rung” or getting RED LIGHT Concussion is a brain injury caused “dinged” or “seeing stars” What if the rider answers all the questions correctly and has none of the • Transport to medical facility for by trauma to the head. 95% of • Not knowing what happened (little or no memory Key Signs or Symptoms? evaluation. people who experience concussion just before and/or just after a fall) do NOT have any loss of • Headache GREEN LIGHT consciousness. • Loss of balance and/or equilibrium • Rider can immediately continue with Wake UP the course. Why Should I Care? • Dizziness to Second Impact • Confusion What if the rider misses questions or During the recovery period from Riding is a contact sport - just like appears confused? concussion, people are at risk for other football, soccer, skiing or boxing. • Fuzzy and/or blurry vision types of additional accident or injury. In a Every rider may someday fall off and YELLOW LIGHT • Poor concentration or inability to carry out a set of fit, healthy person, a second trauma to an hit their head on the ground or simple instructions • Rider ought to stop and be observed already injured head that has not yet another hard object. No matter for 15 minutes. completely healed may have • Drowsiness and/or fatigue disproportional consequences. It does not how good or experienced the • Nausea and/or vomiting matter how mild a second hit nor does it rider, no matter matter what causes a second trauma, hit, • Poor memory or forgetfulness about “routine” What if the rider answers all the snap or jerk to the head. It could be as how gentle the things like “losing” your keys questions correctly and has no Key Signs simple as friendly slap on the back or being horse, no matter or Symptoms after 15 minutes? how safe the • Irritability or unusual aggressiveness rear-ended in a traffic accident. environment, Almost all mild concussions occur without GREEN LIGHT It is essential that the brain be given anyone can hit any loss of consciousness. • Rider can continue on course and adequate time to “heal” from any their head due to a can ride additional horse(s) in the concussion. The concussion, the head What Should I Do? fall off their horse. Ask a rider immediately after s/he hits their head due competition. trauma, is what matters, not the fall from a Even you. to a fall, even if they do not appear to look horse, the traffic accident, another sports- symptomatic – dizzy, confused, out of balance, etc.: What if one or more Key Signs or related injury such as skiing, soccer, etc. Pinehurst Gazette photo Symptoms persist after 15 minutes? • What day is it? There are serious risks if the brain is not Chances are you’ll never need to RED LIGHT • What is the name of the allowed to completely heal from a know about concussions. Just in • Rider’s competing day is over. concussion. Second Impact can be case you or someone you train, competition? catastrophic. Second Impact is no joke. judge or watch falls off a horse and • In what place or town is the • Rider should not be left alone at the hits their head, here are some barn, and… Protect yourself from repeated head injury competition located? before the original concussion has healed. answers to commonly asked questions about concussions, so that • What was your start time? • Should consult a physician for Do not ride or participate in any other sport appropriate medical assessment and evaluation at their earliest until all symptoms of a first concussion are • What number is your next fence? convenience totally and completely resolved. management can follow— Never “tough it out” after a concussion!
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