UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Perspective From a Varsity Athlete Seeking Concussion Information to Help Recovery Baker, Emily; Karmali, Shazya; Babul, Shelina


The purpose of this paper is to share my experience, as a varsity rugby player, in seeking guidance and accurate and accessible concussion education and information through online web-based platforms after suffering multiple concussions. My experience is not unique; I am one of countless young adults who search the web for knowledge and information through online search engines for health-related advice. Young adults utilize the Internet for accurate and relevant health information, as the digital age has reshaped how one obtains relevant information to change their knowledge and behaviour. When my sports medicine physician informed me that I could not participate in rugby-related contact practices for six-months, I felt I needed more information on my brain’s recovery time following multiple concussions, and an explanation as to why I had to take so much time off to heal when physically I felt fine. Knowing that I would be missing provincial rugby tournaments and a tour to Ireland, I wanted to find answers beyond those provided by my healthcare provider. Throughout my search for information, I discovered a lot of information on concussions but I had troubles finding all the answers from one trusted and reputable source. In this commentary, I discuss my experience with concussions, how I used the internet to obtain credible information and what I found, how social media provided me with support, and why finding accurate concussion information is important for recovery.

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