This post was written originally in 2011, but has been re-posted numerous times, it will continue to be posted until we all get the message…
Hogwash! There is NOTHING mild about a concussion, period. However media, teams, players and even medical staffs continue to use this nomenclature with this injury. It is simply counterproductive to label this injury with a “mild” tag, and hampers the effort of everyone trying to increase awareness.
When public speaking I often times compare a mild concussion to being mildly pregnant. It is rather simple you are concussed or you are not, just like being pregnant.
Granted, those that have extensive training in the area of injuries, and particularly head injuries, understand the term “mild” when it is in concert with concussion. This subset of the population is not the one that needs the education, rather it is the general public, which includes players, coaches and parents. A common problem amongst people who are educated in a particular field is that they forget about both who they are servicing and the education level of people other than their peers. It’s a fine balance to educate without talking down to others, but understanding the stigmas of the topics help with that effort.
One serious stigma is the “mild” tag that is placed on concussions. Those that watch and participate in sports are so used to using that clarification when assessing and addressing injuries as a whole, that perhaps it carries over to the traumatic brain injury just sustained by the athlete. We as athletic trainers and doctors Continue reading