Scientists Find Connection Between Drugs & Concussions

Concussions are often called a “silent epidemic,” affecting thousands of teens every year. More than 173,000 children and young adults are seen by doctors every year due to brain injuries, including concussions. A study from 2013 claimed that teens who smoke pot and drink alcohol, even rarely, have more of a risk of getting a concussion than their peers who don’t participate in these illicit activities. Test Smartly Labs digs into this study to hear what the experts have to say. 

What is a Concussion?

Any sudden blow to the head that shakes the brain against the skull can cause a concussion. The blow can occur during a collision while playing sports, falling, a car crash, or fighting.

Concussion Symptoms

Obvious concussion symptoms include randomly passing out or having trouble remembering what happened prior to the injury. Other signs include having trouble processing thoughts and remembering information, severe emotional changes, headaches or dizziness, and changed sleep patterns. Unfortunately, concussions often go unnoticed because the symptoms aren’t always immediately obvious, especially if the teen never passes out. The effects of a concussion can last for hours, days, or even months.

The 2013 Study

Canadian researchers found a that there was a correlation between teens who drink and/or smoke pot with a higher risk of getting a concussion. Nearly 9,000 Ontario students between 7th and 12th grade were surveyed. The study found that students who occasionally or frequently drank or smoked were 20% more likely to get a concussion than their permanently sober peers. The study doesn’t have an exact explanation for this phenomenon, but the evidence certainly backs up the claim.

Other Explanations

Drugs and alcohol are not the only factors contributing to concussions. Other studies show that athletes who play contact sports, male teens, and students who perform poorly at school are at a higher risk of getting a concussion.

IF YOU ARE WORRIED THAT YOUR TEEN IS EXPERIMENTING WITH DRUGS, WE PROVIDE ACCURATE AND CONFIDENTIAL DRUG TESTING. CALL (816) 800-9699 OR CONTACT TEST SMARTLY LABS TODAY. YOU CAN MAKE AN APPOINTMENT AT ANY OF OUR 5 KANSAS CITY AREA LOCATIONS.

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