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Brain Injuries and High School Football

America is known for its love of football, and Texas is no exception. Texans are particularly passionate about the sport at all levels, from high school teams to the National Football League. Thousands of high school students participate in their football programs each year, aspiring to become the next major-league star.

However, the popularity of football comes with a price. The sport carries a high risk of injury, especially when it comes to traumatic brain injuries (TBIs). 

Football Players Can Suffer Serious Injuries

TBIs occur when a person suffers a blow or jolt to the head, which damages the brain inside of the skull. These injuries can range from mild concussions to severe, life-threatening brain damage. 

Football players are at risk of getting hit in the head multiple times during a game or practice, and these impacts can cause serious harm. On average, approximately 2.8 brain and spinal cord injury deaths occur among high school football players every year. 

Many more players suffer serious injuries and damage due to head trauma, which often occurs repeatedly over their careers. In some cases, the damage can be so severe that it can affect the player’s quality of life.

Signs and Symptoms of a Traumatic Brain Injury

While protective headgear can cushion the impact, it does not always prevent brain injuries. If you or your child is injured while playing football, it is important to recognize the signs of head trauma and seek medical attention right away. 

Some of the most common symptoms include:

  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Dizziness
  • Seizures
  • Loss of balance
  • Speech problems
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Light and sound sensitivity
  • Memory or concentration problems
  • Difficulty sleeping

Brain injuries do not always show symptoms right away, and different people may experience different symptoms. For this reason, it is critical to seek medical attention after suffering any type of head injury—regardless of whether you believe the injury is serious or not. An untreated head injury can be fatal.

Can You Pursue Legal Action for a Football-Related Brain Injury?

Brain injuries and fatalities are relatively rare in football, but they do happen. In some cases, they are completely unavoidable and not the fault of any person or entity. However, a football organization may fail to protect its players or intentionally cause harm. In this situation, the student and his or her parents could pursue legal action.

It can be very difficult to prove that a high school teacher or coach is liable for a brain injury, and many courts are unwilling to hold them responsible. If your case involves any of the following situations, however, you have a greater chance of success:

  • Faulty equipment caused your child to suffer a brain injury.
  • The incompetence of the coaching staff caused your child’s brain injury or caused it to be worse than it would have been otherwise.
  • The brain injury was caused by an intentional act of violence at the hands of a coach or a fellow player.

If your child suffered a brain injury while playing high school football, it is important to seek medical care right away. If someone else’s actions caused his or her injury, speak to a Texas brain injury lawyer as soon as possible. An attorney can review your case, help you understand your legal options, and fight for the compensation that your child deserves.