Dylan Hearn probably has a great future ahead of him; he is wise beyond is meager years. The 7-year-old Colorado boy has a personal crusade to made sure that everyone takes concussion seriously.
And he knows what he is talking about: He suffered two concussions in the past six months. The first was playing football, and the second happened when he ran into the dishwasher at his home (he was chasing his brother.) The injuries put him out of commission for about a month, including his favorite activities—no TV, no video games, no reading.
According to an article on 9News.com, Dylan says:
“It hurts,” said Dylan. “A lot of sick and dizzy. Sometimes, you have blackouts.”
Now, Dylan’s concussions are changing the way people around him view head injuries. For example, his baseball coach, Jeff Pigati, says that the determination of injury used to be totally in the hands of players. If they said they were feeling well enough to play, they played. But kids and athletes being what they are, they typically jumped back into the game sooner than they probably should have. That’s what killed another boy, 15-year-old Jake Snakenberg:
Snakenberg died in September 2004 after sustaining a serious concussion in a football game. Doctors believe it was his second concussion in a week and he died of Second Impact Syndrome. Just before the game, he told everyone he was fine.
That’s why there is now a law in place called the Jake Snakenberg Act. It requires all coaches, like Pigati, to undergo concussion training to look for signs of possible brain injury.
Dylan and Alex Hearn [Dylan’s mother] applaud the new measures.
[If you would like to see the online training program for coaches, click here: CDC HeadsUp]
Now, coach Pigati watches kids for head injury and tell-tale symptoms, and he’s happy to do so. Like most coaches, Pigati takes the health of his players very seriously. He applauds the Colorado law requiring coaches to undergo concussion training.
And Dylan? He likes the law, too. Why?
“Because it’s safe,” said Dylan.
From the mouths of babes.
To read the full story on 9News.com, click here: 7-year-old applauds new concussion rules