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The 5 most dangerous sports for boys

While team sports help keep boys healthy and active, there are also dangers. Learn which sports are the riskiest - and how to keep your son safe.

By Lauren Shanley

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How dangerous is your child's sport?

Every year, more than 135,000 children and teens nationwide find themselves in emergency rooms due to sports-related accidents. The most common diagnosis? Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), which are caused by bumps, blows, or jolts to the head — all of which can disrupt the normal function of the brain.

According to Safe Kids USA, of the 3.5 million children treated for sports injuries in 2009, and over 40 percent of TBIs in children were sports-induced. While TBIs can range from mild to severe, all should be taken seriously. The majority of TBIs are concussions, which is when the brain moves inside the skull and can even bang against the skull bone. Such intensive cerebral trauma can cause some brain cells to excrete neurotransmitters, in effect flooding the brain with chemicals that inhibit learning and memory, resulting in confusion, blurred vision, and memory loss.

The following five team sports are the most dangerous. While team sports provide a wealth of emotional, social, and physical benefits for kids, it's important to provide your young athlete with the proper protective gear and to teach your child to follow game regulations to avoid brain trauma and other serious injuries.

 Photo credit: mistahTee

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Comments from GreatSchools.org readers

01/9/2012:
"perhaps there are more playing that causes increased injuries and/or more awareness of what MIGHT be an injury gets checked out. I notice that you never bring up any injury numbers for somethuing like bikes (reg.) or other rec.sports. Would you like the kid to be just locked up in his/her room until 18 ? "
07/18/2011:
"soccer is not dangures so get your facts straghi "
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