DENMARK - Concussion safety is taking center stage in Wisconsin.
Governor Scott Walker recently signed a law to help prevent further injuries in youth sports.
And doctors say the issue goes well beyond the playing field.
Head injuries in youth contact sports are no joke.
"A minor head injury followed by another minor head injury can progress right into disability or death," explained Director of Aurora BayCare Sports Medicine Dr. Paul Summerside.
Under a new law in Wisconsin, schools are required to take the issue even more seriously.
The law states athletes under the age of 19 who suffer head injuries must be removed from practice or games.
They will now need clearance from a trained medical professional to return.
Area coaches and athletic directors said they back the new rules.
"We have to keep the kids as safe as we can, and I think this bill is a good extension of what most of the schools in the area are already doing," said Ashwaubenon Varsity Football Coach Mark Jonas.
"Every athlete needs to take the test before we'll allow them to even step foot on the practice field," explained Denmark High School Athletic Director Bill Miller.
But besides taking time to get back on the field, doctors say those injured athletes will also need time to return to the classroom.
"Anything that's a drain on the brain, or work for the brain, will make concussion symptoms worse, and healing longer. And so we're talking with teachers about understanding that," Dr. Summerside said. "Those students will need some time to recover in their studies, just as well as they'll need some time to recover in their sport."
This past week, Dr. Summerside spoke to faculty at Denmark High School. He told them how to watch for the signs of concussions. Those include irritability and the inability to concentrate.
School officials say they'll make sure the students taken care of.
"Normally, do you guys report to teachers when a student has had an injury like that?," FOX 11 asked Miller.
"We haven't in the past and I think this is all about Dr. Summerside's presentation, which was letting teachers know that, that information will be coming to them in the future," Miller replied.
Dr. Summerside says on average, it takes seven to ten days to fully recover from a concussion.
Wisconsin is now the 32nd state to have a concussion safety law in place.
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