This week, our students and staff reviewed our concussion policy in light of Rowan’s Law Day
on September 27. Our Seniors in Charge (SICs) of the Health Centre School shared a presentation about Rowan Stringer’s story during Chapel this week. They shared a video that highlighted the importance of learning the signs of a concussion and encouraged students to notify an adult should they recognize these signs in a peer, competitor, themselves, or anyone else.
Know the Symptoms
A person with a concussion might have any of the signs or symptoms listed below. The athlete may exhibit these symptoms immediately, after a few hours, or even days later. Just one sign or symptom is enough to suspect a concussion. Most people with a concussion do not lose consciousness.
- Blurred vision
- Sensitivity to light or sound
- Ringing the ears
- Not feeling “right”
- Sleeping more or less than usual
- Difficulty falling asleep
- Not thinking clearly
- Slower thinking
- Feeling confused
- Problems concentrating and/or remembering
Look for the Red Flags:
Red flags may mean the person has a more serious injury. Treat red flags as an emergency and call 911.
Red flags include:
- Neck pain and tenderness
- Double vision
- Weakness or tingling in the arms or legs
- Severe or increasing headache
- Seizure or convulsions
- Loss of consciousness
- Vomiting more than once
- Increasing restlessness, agitation, or aggression
- Becoming increasingly confused
What to Do Next
Follow these three steps if you or someone you know experiences a blow to the head, face, neck, or body and you suspect a concussion. Remember to call 911 if you are concerned that the injury is life-threatening.
Recognize the Signs and Symptoms
And remove the athlete from the sport/physical activity, even if they insist they are ok.
If you see someone who may be exhibiting signs and symptoms, speak up. Tell an adult!
Assess the Student
If this occurs at a school activity, have the athlete assessed by a trainer or a staff member.
They will complete medical forms and escort the student to the Health Centre.
The athlete will then be assessed by a physician or nurse practitioner.
Support a gradual return to school and sport protocol as outlined by the Health Centre.
About Rowan’s Law Day
Rowan’s Law was named for Rowan Stringer, a 17 year-old-high-school rugby player from Ottawa, who died in the spring of 2013 from a condition known as second impact syndrome (swelling of the brain caused by a subsequent injury that occurred before a previous injury healed). Rowan is believed to have experienced three concussions over six days while playing rugby. She had a concussion but didn’t know her brain needed time to heal. Neither did her parents, teachers or coaches.
Thanks to the tremendous efforts of her parents, Gord and Kathleen Stringer, Rowan’s Law and Rowan’s Law Day (which occurs the last Wednesday of every September) were established to honour her memory and bring awareness to concussions and concussion safety.