Nursing Sample Paper on Causes and Effects of Concussion


            A concussion has been defined by numerous scholars and medical practitioners’ as a cranial injury resulting from the rapid movement of the head or a blow to the head from an object which might cause either a slight orsignificant shift in the activities of the brain. The concussion can last for a few minutes or even longer depending on the magnitude of the forcewhich has resulted in the concussion (Zeigler). There are two primary types of concussions, and they include simple and complex concussion. Asimple concussion is often mild and common among the adolescent and also children. It does not result in any complications or long-term health issues as they often get resolve within a week or less. Complex concussion, on the other hand, is rather fatal and requires immediate attention. Acomplex concussion is rampant among athletes and sportsmen and women especially those engaging in sports activities such as rugby and American football (Swierzewski). Unlike simple concussion, a complex concussion can damage the brain permanently. Although it is not easily to tell if one has suffered a concussion some of the physical signs of a complex concussion include seizures, swelling of the cranium, constant nose bleeds,and also blurred vision (Stanley).

Concussions are health issue that continues facing athletes and sportsmen and women despite the provision of safety gears designed to protect the cranium from head injury resulting from collisions. More so, the complex concussion is widespread due to the force, speed and magnitude of the impact. The major signs and symptoms of concussion can be categorized into four.They include thinking, physical issues, emotional instability, and sleep deprivation issues. Thinking symptoms include the difficulty in remembering or concentrating. Some of the physical signs include constant headaches, dizziness, nausea, and also sensitivity to light. Thirdly, some of the emotionsigns include depression, anxiety, and also irritability. Lastly, other signs and symptoms include insomnia and sleeping for more hours.

There are numerous treatment procedures used in treating concussions; however, treatment is paramount and should be given more priority. Most sports organizations and also medical personnel advocate the use of safety gears such as helmets by both the athletes and also children while riding bicycles. The safety gears are designed in a way that enables them to safeguard the brain against head tremors and injuries. Although prevention is vital, the study seeks to review some of the causes and effects of concussion depending on the period it is left unattended (Heegaard W, et al.).

Causes of a Concussion

There are various causes of concussions which can result in a severe blow to the head, neck and also face. Concussions can also result from vigorous shaking of the head. Some of the common causes of concussions include car accidents, falls, and sports. Thus, no one is exempted from suffering a concussion; however, the most vulnerable group of people includes sportsmen and women, auto-sports drivers and also children.

Sports such as football and rugby have recorded more concussions cases over the last decade. However, the form and mechanism of concussion incurred are unique to the type of sporting activity. For instance, an injury occurred during a rugby match may be different from one suffered during a football or hockey game. The most common cause of concussions results from head to head contact, head to the ground, head to body contact, and also ball to head impact. Due to the severity of the injuriesexperienced during sports activities, the various organizations in charge of managing the sportsmen and women and also organizing matches have established certain rules and regulations which are designed to regulate the conduct of the players during a game. Also, the rules prohibit certain movesduring matches such as football and rugby which are known to result in neck injuries and also cranial concussions which might result from helmet to helmet blows. Such moves are considered to be illegal and thus, they might lead to lawsuits and also the termination of the player’s contract. According to medical institutes and personnel, proper implementation of the rules and regulations might decrease the number of concussion cases reported in the last five years (Zeigler).

In soccer, concussions mostly results from head to head collision when two or more athletestry to compete for the same ball.In the sports this type of move is known as a ‘header.’ In as much as direct collision might result in a severe head injury, the speed, force, and magnitude of the players’ movement, can fatal head injuries and complex concussions. Secondly, baseball, hockey, and softball players also fall into the category of highly vulnerable players since the games involve the movement of numerous players, the movement of a ball or plate at high speed, and also the proximity of the players to the plates and balls.For instance, baseball pitchers stand the greatest risk of getting a concussion. There are numerous safety gears within the markets that major with the production and supply of sporting gears such as helmets. However, the most trusted supplier is the Rawling gears as its helmets are designed to sustain forces of up to 100mph.

Secondly, car injuries such as head-on collisions are also a commons source of concussions to drivers and also travelers especially those using road transport. According to the New Jersey State Police Department,there have been more than 1000 traffic accidents recording in 2016. Out of the 1000 cases, nearly 530 were fatal accidents while less than 500 were non-fatal (Jones). Medical practitioners and neurologist have stated that in as much as the fatal accidents can result in concussions, the non-fatal accidents have been known to be the leading causes of concussions. Although accidents can be prevented through responsible driving and also the use of safety gears such as safety belts, accidents cannot be eliminated completely.

Thirdly, falls have been stated as one of the causes of concussions among the adults and also children. The fatality and the seriousness of a fall can be determined by the height, of the fall, the impact of the fall, and also thespeed of the falling. Construction personnel have reported most concussions resulting from the falling, other cases have also been reported byelectricians dealing with the installation of electric poles and also transformers. Also, concussions from falls are rampant among children and young adolescents within the age bracket of 13 and 16 who are still in their active phases and like to experiment. However, despite the development of safety gears and also the development of rules and regulations such as the road transport safety regulations, it is impossible to reduce the concussions cases reported annually.

Effects of a concussion

            The effects of a concussion are determined by the severity of the concussion suffered, thus, if the concussion is severe, the results will be different and more durable than if the concussion suffered is minor. The effects can be categorized as short term, cumulative and also prolonged or long term effects. The short term effects can be categorized into three, and they include emotional, cognitive, and physical. These types of effects last for a few hours or even weeks depending on the impact and they appear immediately after the trauma or the blow. Some of the physical short term effects include headaches, change of the sleeping patterns, comas, loss of consciousness, vomiting, blurred vision and also, tinnitus (the constant ringing sound in the ears).Emotional short-term effects include depression, anxiety, mood swings, the feeling of helplessness, and also frustration. However, the psychological effects can vary depending on the person’s personality, and the extent of the damage resulting from the blow. Thirdly, short-term cognitive effects include total or fractional memory loss, loss of concentration or focus on joint activities such as simple conversations. Also, cognitive effects can include slow reflexive movement and also difficulty in communicating due to the dentition of the speech function (Vasquez).

Cumulative Effects

There has been an increase in the number of research studies conducted on the effects of repetitive head injuries and also multiple concussions suffered by athletes.Findings from studies performed on soccer players indicated that soccer players sustained concussions from using the head to strike and pass the ball around the field. Specifically, in a study carried out on 37 professional soccer players, both mild and severe effects were detected in areas such as attention span, poor judgment, memory loss, and also poor concentration. In another study performed on 53 active soccer players, the researchers identified the presence of memory impairment and visual-perpetual tasks. The same results were evident in studies conducted on football and hockey players (Graham et al.). Furthermore due to the impact and cumulative hits sustained on the cranium there was the presence of distraction of the blood brain barrier, thus resulting in the increase of the brain’s permeability to vasculature (Iverson et al.).

            Prolonged Effects

Prolonged effects are also known as long term effects which are extended for a period due to the severity of the concussion incurred and also the period which the victim stayed without seeking medical attention. Every day there are reports stating the retirement of a professional athlete at the prime of their careers due to long-term effects suffered. In most cases, a person does not develop a concussion on the first blow, but from the repeated blows sustained by the cranium. However, at times a single hit might result in a devastating change of a person’s lifestyle due to the effect of the single blow to the head. Soccer, hockey and football players sustain several hits on a daily basis during the training sessions and also the main matches. According to cerebrum professionals, after experiencing a concussion a person will most likely experience post-concussion syndrome which might linger for several days, weeks, months, and also years depending on the impact of the blow sustained.Some of the post-concussion effects include dizziness, severe headaches, and also nausea.

Some of the prolonged implications of a concussion includeloss of both long and short term memory loss and also the lack of a person’s ability to pay attention and engage in conversations with their peers. Also, concussions can result in lifelong migraines which result from the blows sustained to the head.  Although there are drugs which might help reduce the severity of the migraines, there are no treatments that can treat migraines and eliminate the migraines completely. Thirdly, migraines also lead to nausea and also the lack of balance. Traumatic brain injuries may result in a person’s inability to focus and also become dizzy, and these often make a person nauseated (Carrick Brain Centers). Other possible long-term effects of concussion include amnesia, confusion, insomnia, and also irritability. These effects might damage the nervous system and also a person’s cognitive abilities such as the sense of touch. The long term effects are permanent and although some drugs and therapies can help counter the long-term effects of aconcussion, the damage is permanent.


Although the causes of a concussion are limited, the effects resulting from a concussion can be quite vast ranging from mild effect to devastating implications.Presently, the medical department has not exhausted all the possible effects of concussions and thus the effects limited above are not comprehensive. Despite the medical and other respective organizations’ abilities to prevent concussions, the reduction of concussions has proven to be quite challenging. Although it is impossible to prevent concussions, the responsibility of controlling concussion is a personal activity that can only be controlled by a person.




Works Cited

Graham, Robert, et al. Consequences of Repetitive Head Impacts and Multiple Concussions. Sports-Related Concussions in Youth: Improving the Science, Changing the Culture, NCBI Bookshelf, 4 Feb. 2014, Accessed 13 Nov. 2016.

IVERSON, GRANT, et al. Brain Injury. InformaUK, May 2004.

Jersey, State of New.“New Jersey State Police – Fatal Accident Statistics 2016 – Year to Date by County.”State of New Jersey : Department of Law and Public Safety, 2016, Accessed 13 Nov. 2016.

Jones, Chris. How Concussions Work. HowStuffWorks, 21 Dec. 2011, 13 Nov. 2016.

Staff, Mayo Clinic.“Concussion Causes.”Mayoclinic, 2 Apr. 2014, 13 Nov. 2016.

Swierzewski, Stanley. “Concussion Overview, Types of Concussion.”Remendy Health Communities .Com, 8 Sept. 2015, 13 Nov. 2016.

“The Life Long Effects of Concussions | Carrick Brain Centers.”Blog, Cerebrum Health, 19 Aug. 2013, 13 Nov. 2016.

Vasquez, Maria. “Short and Long Term Effects of Concussions.”Bisnar | Chase; Personal Injury Assistant, 1999, 13 Nov. 2016.

W, Heegaard Brain Injury.Emergency Medicine Clinics of North America.Vol. 25, no. 655, 2007.

Zeigler, Terry. “What Is a Concussion?” Sportsmd.Com, SportsMD, 22 Apr. 2016, 13 Nov. 2016.