3 ways the NFL can reduce the risk of CTE in football players
Very few topics are as controversial and as in-demand as the dangers of professional football.
According to research, there are high rates of traumatic brain injuries, concussions, and a severe brain condition called chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) in past players. The problem with these injuries is that they can have highly terrible debilitating effects.
As a result, the NFL changed a couple of rules during the 2017–2018 football season to improve safety in the field of play. But have the rules been effective?
What are the implications for college students, teenagers, and children who play football? And how can the risk of CTE be reduced in football players?
We’ll look at these in this article.
Overview of CTE
Chronic traumatic encephalopathy is a brain disorder — a brain degeneration caused by repeated traumas to the head. The diagnosis is usually made at autopsy by analyzing sections of the brain.
CTE is a rare disorder, one that is not fully understood.
CTE is associated with contact sports, like American football or boxing. The majority of the studies available are based on ex-footballers.
This disorder was previously known as dementia pugilistica and “punch drunk” syndrome. However, these terms are outdated because it is now understood that this condition may affect other categories of people than just ex-boxers. The diagnosis and prevalence of CTE are still subject to debate.
Currently, the condition is managed only with supportive treatment, and current research aims to find a reliable technique for diagnosing the disease.
Symptoms of CTE
The symptoms of CTE vary between individuals. However, it tends to be similar to symptoms of other degenerative brain conditions, especially Alzheimer’s disease.
CTE starts several years after repeated concussions or severe blows to the head. The symptoms affect the functioning of the brain, ultimately resulting in dementia.