Non-Concussion Injuries in Football

Non-Concussion Injuries in Football

Concussions have been getting most of the attention lately, when it comes to football injuries. It can be easy to forget that other types of football injuries can be very serious, and sometimes fatal. Traumatic injuries, such as spinal cord and knee injuries, are difficult to eliminate in contact sports, but can be minimized with proper policies. Overuse injuries are very common, and can often be prevented with proper training and adequate time off. Heat injuries, which can be fatal, are entirely preventable.

Traumatic Football Injuries

Traumatic injuries will always happen in football. It’s the nature of the sport. Common traumatic injuries in football include:

All of the above injuries can cut a player’s career short and haunt him for life. While they can be debilitating and affect future career options as well as quality of life, they are not fatal or catastrophic injuries.

Spinal cord injuries are rare, but still a real risk in football. In 2008, there were 14 serious spinal cord injuries in football. In most years, there are 10 or fewer. Spinal cord injuries can be fatal, and for those who survive the results can be life-altering, resulting in permanent paralysis and other impairments.

Overuse Injuries in Football

Overuse injuries occur over a period of time, not for a single event. They typically affect the lower back, shoulder or knees. Proper training and general fitness can help prevent this type of football injury. Early detection and treatment, can be effective and keep overuse injuries from getting worse. Unfortunately means taking a break from intense training so the injury can heal, and many players and coaches are not willing to do that.

Football Heat Injuries

Heat injuries are preventable. Certain health conditions can increase the risk of serious or fatal heat injuries, so athletes should see a doctor before they being training. Heat injuries are most common at the beginning of the training season, when it is very hot and players’ bodies have not yet adapted to the physical activity. Football players should gradually work up to the level of intensity they will eventually reach. Of course, frequent hydration is crucial to preventing heat injuries.

Learn more about football injuries and football safety.

Avatar About Sandra Dalton

With a background as a paralegal, focusing on criminal defense and civil rights, Sandra Dalton launched her freelance writing career in 2000 with a weekly column on Freedom for Suite 101 and pro bono projects for individuals and organizations supporting causes close to her heart. One of her first projects was for the Police Compliant Center writing about police misconduct. Sandra’s legal writing quickly expanded to include personal injury, animal welfare, criminal defense, disability discrimination, family law and much more.