How to Safely Treat Football Concussions

Football related injuries are now in the spotlight unlike any time before.  The recent settlement by the NFL with over 4,500 plaintiffs for $750 million has brought the issue of concussions and other long-term injuries from the sport to the forefront of American consciousness.  It has undeniably become America’s pastime over the years.  A 2013 Harris Poll on America’s favorite sports found that football captured two of the top three spots with professional football claiming 34 percent of the vote and college football receiving 11 percent.  However, despite its allure and sheer entertainment, football is developing a reputation as a dangerous sport with serious long-term consequences.

The key to participating safely in football, avoiding injury, and maintaining health lies in taking proper precautions and treating injuries appropriately.  For many players, the solution has been found in regular chiropractic care.  Several athletes have come to rely on chiropractors to keep them on the field and to address injuries as they occur.  Former pros such as Jerry Rice and Jim McMahon have spoken out about their own experiences with chiropractic care and the dramatic differences that it has made.  Additionally, all 32 NFL teams currently use chiropractic as a treatment option for players.

Among the most common football injuries there are a particular few which have been shown to be the most receptive to chiropractic care:

  • Traumatic Injuries – For many athletes, in particular those who are younger, traumatic injuries to the back, neck or shoulders can be avoided by keeping the head up and using proper tackling technique.  Additionally, strength training can help protect the body from cervical injury as well.  However, when these injuries do occur, a chiropractor may be able to help through spinal adjustments and cervical manipulation, restoring comfort and mobility to the affected area.
  • Overuse or Stress Injuries – Athletes often sustain overuse injuries through small repeated injury to a particular area without ever realizing it.  These smaller aches and pains may seem to be a normal part of the game, and many will allow them to go untreated.  However, these injuries will only worsen over time and may eventually sideline a player all together.  A chiropractor can help by addressing many of these injuries at their source and alleviating the pressure that may be causing them.
  • Concussions – Concussions are among the most common football injuries, occurring more often in this sport than any other.  When multiple concussions are suffered over long periods of time, serious degenerative disorders such as chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) may occur.  Following concussions, headaches and neck pain are not uncommon due to subluxations in the spine.  These symptoms can last for years, but with the help of chiropractic care, proper alignment can be restored, bringing relief from debilitating symptoms.

In a time when football is coming under fire for rough play and long-term injury to its participants, avoidance and proper care of injuries has never been more important.  There is a much better understanding now of how traumatic and overuse injuries or concussions may affect players down the road.  Fortunately, many are also recognizing chiropractic care as a valuable asset in both preventative and restorative care. 

If you or your child participate in football and have sustained injury or are simply concerned about long-term health, contact SouthEast Chiropractic: The Motion Centers.  Our physicians treat athletes from a variety of sports, including football and can develop an expert treatment plan based on your needs.  You can contact our Gastonia or Belmont offices to request an appointment.

Additionally, if you would like to learn more about athletes and chiropractic care, click the image below for access to our free and informative guide.