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Recently I have written about concussions for men and athletics but I neglected to include the reality of women and concussions. A young women, "Sarah", who came to me for counseling, who was a hockey player, suffered a blind-sided blow to the head that ended her enjoyment of playing her favourite sport.

She was incapacitated for the second semester with bad migraine headaches which kept her for the most part in darkened bed room. Because of her accident she was not able to attend classes at her high school. Her family doctor has advised her not to be involved with any activities that could cause her concussion to recur.

Women’s hockey is a growing sport, evolving through faster, stronger, larger players. But, concussions have kept some of the best players for extended periods of time out of the game - sometimes for ever.

Amanda Kessel , a leading scorer for the Americans in Sochi and the college player of the year 2013, has not played since ending her career at the University of Minnesota at the age of 23 because of lingering symptoms from concussion. Concussion have kept Canada’s Haley Irwin from playing professionally in the Canadian Women`s Hockey League.

A 2014 summary of self-reported concussions among NCAA student-athletes said that women’s hockey had the largest percentage (21%) of players who had experienced at-least one concussion.The stats show that female hockey players sustained concussion almost twice as frequently as their male counterparts.

Women with concussion histories described memory deficits and fears of chronic encepholopathy - a degenerative brain disease that has been diagnosed in dozens of hockey and football players.

Women coping with concussions are in a league of their own often times having to cope all by themselves from their pain and suffering.

They say that a picture is worth a thousand words. For the sake of your children who are athletes please see the outstanding real life story in the movie "CONCUSSION". Contact sports possible long term consequences from playing the game are real. Chasing the dream may mean living with some long term nightmares.

Len Lesser

Len Lesser posts a report every week

You can email Len at lenlesser@hotmail.com