The Risk of Head Injuries in MMA

The Risk of Head Injuries in MMA
November 5, 2015 Kyle Jakosky
In Concussions, Mixed Martial Arts
risk-of-concussions-in-mma

Mixed martial arts is an exciting sport as you watch competitors battle each other brutally for victory. Most of the time, injuries are not as bad as they appear with more blood and sweat than actual damage. Concussions in MMA are common, and most people seldom think twice about them. Fighters take a hit, get some rest and are back in the cage again, ready for another fight.

The Seriousness of Concussions in MMA

What many don’t realize is concussions are a serious business. Even when the person appears to be fine, they may not always be ready to resume fighting.

A concussion occurs from a severe blow to the head where the brain hits against the skull. It’s a traumatic injury that may show no visible signs. It can also occur from a fall or from severe shaking. Sometimes there are cuts and bruises on the face, especially in MMA fights, but no other outward indications.

Severe concussions often lead to unconsciousness or loss of memory, but mild ones don’t impact the person’s ability to continue fighting. Because of this, concussions can be a dangerous injury to sustain in MMA.

Recovery from Concussions

For most people, all they need is rest to heal from a concussion. Mild ones can take just a few hours for the person to be back to normal. Others require more time, even a few weeks.

The most important part of healing is not to do anything to reinjure your head. The brain is more susceptible to damage during this time.

Symptoms

A person may not show any outward signs of a concussion, but it’s important to watch for one in situations like MMA competitions. Some common signs include the following:

  • Foggy thinking
  • Lack of concentration
  • Unable to remember information
  • Slower movements
  • Headaches
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Blurred vision
  • Problems with balance
  • Dizziness
  • Changes in emotions
  • Easily upset or nervous

The person may also either sleep more or less than normal. They are more emotional and may not act like their normal self.

Long-term Damage from Concussions

Repeated concussions can lead to long-term damage, which impacts the ability to speak, move and learn. Some people experience what is known as postconcussive syndrome. This is when the person doesn’t resume normal functioning after a concussion should have healed.

The condition causes a person to behave differently. They may show a lack of interest in regular activities or have trouble remembering things. They may continue to have headaches and dizziness. Personality is altered with the person becoming more emotional without cause.

A doctor may order tests to check for bleeding or prescribe medication for headaches, but there is no real treatment for this condition other than rest. The best way to deal with a concussion is to avoid it in the first place. Wearing appropriate headgear when participating in sports like boxing and MMA can help prevent concussions. Check out the selection at Gamebreaker to see which helmet works best for you.