Concussions Take Their Toll On J-DHS Athletes

Maddie Scullion and Eva Dougherty

Staff Writers

Throwing up, sensitivity to light and sound and not thinking clearly. What do these three symptoms all have it common? They’re all symptoms of a concussion.  

“They’re horrible,” said freshman Aryana Nazem “You have the worst headaches”. said Nazem. Nazem had a severe concussion last summer while she was ice skating. She went up for a jump and collided with another girl. Nazem then slammed her head on the ice and blacked out. When she came to, she was riding in an ambulance. “I had a really bad concussion,” said Nazem. She had to stop skating for five months. When she started skating again she was sensitive to bright lights among other things.

Freshman Aimee Comanici has also had a sports related concussion. In the spring of last year, she was in a softball game when she got hit in the head with a line drive and fell backwards from the impact and hit her head again on the clay. She was unconscious for a few seconds. When she came to, she couldn’t focus so she was taken out of the game and went home. Then she was taken to the doctor, diagnosed with a concussion, and was out of school for three days and out of softball for the rest of the season.

Freshman Andrew Barclay fell on his head during a lacrosse game and felt dizzy and lightheaded afterward. He was out of sports for a few months. Similar to Nazem, he felt sensitivity to light.

Junior Amber Hyatt was a freshman when she hit she was hit in the head with a soccer ball. She saw a girl kick the ball up, but she didn’t see where the ball went. The next thing she knew, the ball hit her on the back of her head. Just like Barclay, she felt dizzy and like Nazem,had a lot of headaches. Hyatt had to take a leave from sports for nine months.

However not all concussions have to be sports related. Just ask juniors Josh Gutmaker and Bella Hylen who were dancing around in gym class when they hit heads. “I thought she would move,” said Gutmaker. They both had to go to Urgent Care to be checked out. Hylen felt lots of pressure in her head and she felt nauseous. She was then diagnosed with a concussion. Gutmaker’s head was bleeding but he was not diagnosed with a concussion.

Even though freshman Alex Frank plays softball and volleyball, she didn’t get a concussion from playing a sport. Frank was moving a folded up treadmill when the latch broke and the treadmill came falling down on her. She passed out. When she came to, she was dizzy and sensitive to light. Worried that her mom would be mad at her for breaking the treadmill, she didn’t say anything about the accident.But a few days later her mom noticed the broken treadmill and asked her what happened. Frank then came clean and told her mom about the accident. Her mom then took her to the doctors where they ran a few tests and Frank found out she had a concussion.    

School Nurse Jill Hayward said there have been 32 concussions at Jamesville-Dewitt High School this year, both sports related and non-sports related. Concussions have occurred from students being hit on the head with a lacrosse stick to hitting their head on a desk. Almost every sport has had to sit a player out due to concussions.

When math teacher Michael Daly was a sophomore here at J-DHS he hit his head at the bottom of a pool trying to do a flip, during a swim meet. He was out of school for three months. “ I had really bad headaches, I was sensitive to light and my memory and balance were off,” said Mr. Daly. He also said he couldn’t remember anything until three weeks after the accident. “Then I slowly came back after that,” said Mr. Daly.

    Mrs. Hayward says there are many long term effects of concussions. “Mostly being with headaches, memory and vision,” said Mrs. Hayward. She also said some people lose their eye-hand coordination.