Experts estimate that the number of concussions experienced by individuals range from 1.6 to 3.8 million a year (this number includes the number of diagnosed concussions and an estimated number of undiagnosed concussions). A majority of these concussions happen in some sort of sport, which is why it is essential for athletic trainers and coaches to have some sort of assessment to evaluate the athlete if there is a blow or hit to the head. Concussions need to be taken seriously because they not only can have a short-term affect on the brain and body but also a long-term negative affect. Having an effective assessment handy is useful for athletic trainers and coaches as well as informing sport psychology consultants working with an athlete
The Graded Symptom Checklist (GSC) allows the medical personnel to assess many different symptoms of a concussion at five different time periods: time of injury, 2-3 hours post-injury, 24 hours post-injury, 48 hours post-injury, and 72 hours post-injury. This assessment not only allows the medical personnel to evaluate if there are symptoms of a concussion, but it also allows them to rule out other more serious injuries. Trained medical personnel mostly use the assessment as opposed to coaches.
Another assessment that may be helpful to athletic trainers and coaches is the Standardized Assessment of Concussion (SAC). The SAC was designed to be a quick and reliable exam for the mental status of an athlete that is more intuitive for a field practitioner or a coach. It does not require any medical training and can identify concussion characteristics in only 5-6 minutes. The SAC has four sections: orientation, immediate memory, concentration, and delayed recall.
These assessments should be considered very useful, valuable, and necessary by athletic trainers, coaches, and athletes. It could potentially save a life and negative long-term side effects. A sport psychology consultant could also find the assessments very valuable in the work they would do with an athlete. It may provide helpful insight to previous injuries and current evaluation.