GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KKCO)-- The Mesa County Junior Football Association is making sure their players are protected as much as possible against concussions.
This year all of the league's coaches are going through a concussion training session to learn the signs and symptoms of a concussion.
"Our goal is to have [the coaches] aware of the symptoms and signs of concussions," said Dr. Mark Luker of Rocky Mountain Orthopaedic Associates.
"We are trying to really prevent the short-term consequence [of a concussion], which is a second concussive injury in close sequence with the first one," Luker continued. "That can lead to a very severe, or even fatal incident called 'Second Impact Syndrome.'
"The other, more long-term consequence we want to prevent is the 'Post Concussive Syndrome.' If you don't take kids out of play and they get more concussion, they do have longer-term, post-concussive symptoms, [such as] memory loss, poor cognition, mood changes, [and] sleep disorders."
Although this is the first year that the coaches have received official training from local doctors at the Rocky Mountain Orthopaedic Associates, Mesa County has a head start after purchasing nearly $30,000 worth of new safety equipment. This includes a brand new stock of 4-star rated helmets.