Daily Health Headlines

Rate of Youth Soccer Injuries More Than Doubled in 25 Years

👤by Steven Reinberg 0 comments 🕔Monday, September 12th, 2016

MONDAY, Sept. 12, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- As the popularity of soccer has grown in the United States, so has the annual rate of soccer-related injuries in kids.

Injuries more than doubled -- jumping 111 percent between 1990 and 2014 -- researchers report.

Concussions made up only 7 percent of these injuries. But the yearly rate of concussions shot up nearly 1,600 percent over 25 years, the researchers said.

"The increasing number and rate of pediatric soccer-related injuries, especially concussions, underscore the need for increased prevention efforts," said lead researcher Dr. Huiyun Xiang. He's director of the Center for Pediatric Trauma Research at Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus, Ohio.

Both the number and rate of soccer-related injuries increased significantly over the study period, he said.

"This means that the increase in injuries doesn't just come from more children playing soccer, but that athletes may be getting injured more frequently," Xiang said.

Some of the increase is because more athletes are reporting injuries, especially concussions, due to more education and awareness, he said.

Some of the increase also came from more girls playing soccer, Xiang said. "As girls picked up the sport in greater numbers over the past 25 years, they accounted for more injuries as they were learning how to play the game," he said.

In addition, some of the increase came from the higher intensity and duration of playing at middle school and high school levels, Xiang said.

"Two-thirds of the injuries in our study occurred among 12- to 17-year-olds, and the rate of injury was three times higher among this age group than among the younger athletes," he said.

These kids are more likely to be playing soccer at school and with local and travel teams throughout the year than they were at the beginning of the study, Xiang said.

"They also tend to have a more aggressive style of play than younger athletes and have higher energy impacts when they are injured due to their larger body size," he said.

For the study, Xiang and his colleagues collected 25 years of data on soccer injures from hospital emergency departments. They looked for injuries that occurred to players 7 to 17 years old.

Nearly 3 million soccer-related injuries sent children and teens to emergency rooms over the study period, the researchers found.

In addition to concussions, the researchers found that most injuries -- such as sprains, strains and broken bones -- occurred when a player was struck by another player or the ball (39 percent) or when they fell (29 percent).

Most injuries (73 percent) were among older children and teens 12 to 17. Slightly more males were injured -- 56 percent.

One sports medicine expert thinks too many kids are going to the emergency room with injuries that can best be handled by their family doctor.

"We need to address the problem of a huge number of kids going to the emergency room when they should be going to their primary care doctor," said Dr. John Kuluz. He's director of traumatic brain injury and neurorehabilitation at Nicklaus Children's Hospital in Miami.

"We need to know how many really benefit from going to the emergency room," he said.

Parents and coaches should be educated about the criteria for sending children to the emergency room, Kuluz said.

For example, a lot of children with concussions go to the emergency room who don't need to go, he said. "The only time you should go is if there are serious symptoms such as recurring vomiting or changes in consciousness or loss of consciousness, Kuluz said.

To help reduce the rising number of soccer-related injuries, Xiang offered these recommendations:

Take part in a preseason conditioning program that focuses on building core muscles, strengthening neck muscles, and working on hip and thigh strength. Warm up before play. Wear recommended protective gear -- shin guards and mouthguards. Follow and enforce the rules. "Many injuries occur during illegal play or when coaches or referees don't enforce the rules," Xiang said. Learn about concussions. "Know the symptoms and encourage players to report any hits to the head even if they happen in practice. Make sure to follow concussion management and return-to-play policies," he said. Ban heading (hitting the ball with the head) for younger players. "Only allow heading once children reach 11 and introduce it slowly by limiting the amount of heading in practice for children 11 to 13," Xiang said.

The report was published Sept. 12 in the journal Pediatrics.

Article Credits / Source

Steven Reinberg / HealthDay

Steven Reinberg wrote this story for HealthDay. HealthDay provides up to the minute breaking health news. Click here to view this full article from HealthDay.

SOURCES: Huiyun Xiang, M.D., M.P.H., Ph.D., professor, medicine, and director, Center for Pediatric Trauma Research, Nationwide Children's Hospital, Columbus, Ohio; John Kuluz, M.D., director, traumatic brain injury and neurorehabilitation, Nicklaus Children's Hospital, Miami; Sept. 12, 2016, Pediatrics

View More Articles From Steven Reinberg 🌎View Article Website

Sponsored Product

Lunar Sleep for $1.95

Lunar Sleep for $1.95

People who have trouble sleeping typically have low levels of melatonin, so melatonin supplements seem like a logical fix for insomnia. There is a high demand for sleep aids, especially in the U.S. The National Health Interview Survey done in 2002, and again in 2007, found 1.6 million US adults were using complementary and alternative sleep aids for insomnia. Lunar Sleep was a top choice. Use Promo Code: Sleep2014 and only pay $1.95 S&H.

Get Lunar Sleep for $1.95

More Pediatrics / Healthy Kids Articles

Survival Tips for Holiday Road Trips

Survival Tips for Holiday Road Trips0

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 23, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- If you're among the millions of Americans planning to hit the highway over the Thanksgiving holiday, it's important to anticipate bumps in the road, according to a group dedicated to public education and ...

'Enthusiastic' Dads May Mean Less Troubled Kids: Study

'Enthusiastic' Dads May Mean Less Troubled Kids: Study0

TUESDAY, Nov. 22, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- While quality time spent with kids is always important, new research suggests it's a man's attitude that's key to raising happy children. The British study found that the babies of confident, ...

Keep Kids in Mind When Politics Intrude at Thanksgiving

Keep Kids in Mind When Politics Intrude at Thanksgiving0

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 23, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- This Thanksgiving, especially, political differences could spark dinner-table debates that quickly escalate. Two psychiatrists warn that these heated exchanges can harm kids who may overhear ...

Health Tip: Keep Kids Safe During the Holidays

Health Tip: Keep Kids Safe During the Holidays0

(HealthDay News) -- A host of new hazards for young children creep up during the holidays. Here are suggestions for parents and caregivers to help keep kids safe, courtesy of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Supervise ...

TV Snack Ads Make Preschoolers Snack More: Study

TV Snack Ads Make Preschoolers Snack More: Study0

MONDAY, Nov. 21, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Preschoolers who watched "Sesame Street" interrupted by TV ads for a salty snack food ended up eating more of that food soon after, a new study found. The finding suggests that "young children remain ...

View More Pediatrics / Healthy Kids Articles


Write a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Our Mailing List

Subscribe to our mailing list to get the latest health news as it breaks!

Your information will not be shared with anyone!