"At that point, your love for the game takes over; no one ever wants to come out."
It's a pride, it's a mentality that gets beaten into athletes head....leave it all on the field. But we now know what this gladiator mentality can do when athletes suffer concussions. Brian Adams has been on skates as long as he can remember. It's a tradition in his family, from grandfather down to him. And over his playing days, Brian can recall three concussions he suffered, but he admits it could actually number in double digits. Brian's first concussion came during a hockey game as a teenager.
Adams says, "I didn't talk to the coach, I just went back to the bench after I fell twice like I said. And I went back out the next shift, the coach never talked to me. Did he know? I mean maybe...he could have maybe made an assumption that I had, but I never talked to him about it."
After the game Brian's parents brought him to the hospital. He added, "I don't even remember being at the hospital, I don't remember exactly what they said. So, I don't know if it was minor or major. They do a test, a cat scan to make sure you're brain's not bleeding. They send you home and tell you not to sleep and that's about it, take some aspirin."
Devin Warmack has played sports all his life...From football to basketball. Devin was talented enough to earn a scholarship to play basketball at the University of Alabama. Devin has also suffered concussion and he says during his playing days big hits were a point of pride.
Warmack says, "I think back then it was pretty much that and it was more of a tough thing, get back in there, make some more tackles. When we saw stars, that was a good thing you know."
Devin now coaches the pop warner football program that he founded. And all of his sons have played and his oldest Devin Jr. suffered a concussion playing for Proctor High School.
He says, "He received a big hit and it was considered a concussion. That's scary; they don't know where they're at. When they come home they're still lethargic. It's just so scary and you look at these kids now and they're so strong and fast."
Many athletes that have suffered concussions say symptoms last for weeks, months or even years after they were cleared to go back to play. Brian still suffers from Post-Concussion Syndrome or PCS.
Brian says, "I'm very sensitive to light. I used to have migraines I would guess every other month to the point where it hurts to keep my eyes open but I would say I haven't had one of those in about 10 years."
Brian says he's aware of the long term effects concussion could have on him, but he believes it shouldn't stop him from enjoying the thing he loves most, hockey.
Adams added, "I've thought about it, as far as being worried....I still will keep playing hockey for as long as I can. You know you can't control what happened in the past, you can obviously control the future, but I'm not too worried about it."
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