Given that June is Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness month, it’s important that you know the facts about the disease and its impact on our population here in the US. Believe it or not, more than five million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s disease —and someone new, maybe someone you know, develops the disease every 66 seconds.
The statistics on stroke in the US are sobering. According to the American Stroke Association, someone in the US has a stroke every 40 seconds and every four minutes, someone dies of a stroke. The good news is that recognizing and treating symptoms early can minimize the long-term effects and even prevent death.
In honor of National Stroke Awareness Month, we sat down with Gregory Allam, MD, Medical Director of South Shore Hospital’s Stroke Program and a member of the Department of Neurology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, to learn about the signs and symptoms, who is most at risk, and what to do if you or someone you love is exhibiting symptoms.
Though concussions can happen at any age, it is estimated that more than three million children, aged 18 and younger, sustain a traumatic brain injury each year—80 to 90 percent of which are mild. The rise in high-impact youth sports has made our children more susceptible to head injuries and brain trauma than ever before. While it has been a hot topic of conversation in recent days with regard to professional athletes, concussions are a concern for players at both the professional and student athlete level. In fact, any head impact on or off the field that causes trauma to the brain can result in a concussion.
What is a Concussion?
The term concussion is used interchangeably with the term mild traumatic brain injury (TBI).
A mild TBI or concussion is a disruption in the function of the brain as a result of a forceful blow to the head, either direct (such as hitting your head on or against something); or indirect (such as whiplash).
The impact causes the brain to shuffle back and forth within the skull.