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Teenagers who suffer concussions have a 22 percent higher risk of developing multiple sclerosis.

Head trauma while playing football or other sports has recently been linked to chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), a degenerative brain disorder diagnosed in Aaron Hernandez and other suicidal football players, reports Daily Mail.

But researchers wanted to study if the risk of developing other brain diseases is heightened if someone suffers from one or multiple concussions.

The findings showed that adolescents increased their risk of having multiple sclerosis as adults and adds to the growing evidence about the dangers of high-impact sports.

Scientists at Orebro University and the Karolinska Institute in Sweden studied every person in the country who was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS) between 1964 to 2012.

They found 7,292 patients in the national database who were diagnosed with the autoimmune disease.

Researchers used the database to then see if any of the people with MS previously visited the hospital for head trauma or broken bones.

Their results showed that adolescents who suffered from a concussion were 22 percent more likely to develop MS as adults than those who didn’t suffer from head trauma.

This led researchers to hypothesize that adolescent brain injuries were linked to the disease in adulthood.

These findings, published in the Annals of Neurology, come amid a growing swell of research into the impact of concussions when playing sports such as football.

Earlier this year we shared that British scientists investigated the autopsies on six retired professional footballers with dementia and found they had a form of the disease associated with blows to the head, perhaps from “headers”. Read more on that here.

MoM adds

As a mum this freaks me out! My eldest son plays football (AFL) and I have always been worried about the head knocks. But his first concussion was actually at school earlier this year and he has no memory of how it happened. Pretty scary!

Do you worry about kids and contact sport?

Share your comments below.

 

  • Wow, that’s scary. I hate it when my kids get hit in the head; it worries me after hearing of people being killed hit in a certain spot. Protect your noggin!

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  • Interesting read. I would like to read more about this.

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  • It is a concern we should all beaware of.Thanks for the article.

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  • Contact sports will always be a worry – not just for kids, but for adults too!

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  • Dementia I can understand but ms? and it says not just head trauma but broken bones too. Scary!

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  • This is quite scary. And yes, I do worry.

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  • I have always thought head trauma in sport is very concerning.

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  • This is quite an interesting article and area of research. Contact sports do come with some worry, but we weigh up the pros and cons and the stats.

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  • It is concerning that when we think our kids are just playing sports, getting great fitness, that they are actually in danger or something happening. But we must think positive.

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  • I worry about my grandkids playing football. But they love it so much

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  • That’s a big worry for parents who’s kids love playing contact sports. The brain is such a touchy and largely unknown realm

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  • This is really scary indeed. My daughter doesn’t play any sport but anything could happen during physical education at school time.

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  • Concussions have been linked to depression too. This is a bit scary as I’ve had a few.

    Reply

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