Post-Concussion Syndrome (in the media)
Even when Crosby returns to full-health, the barrage of questions he is bound to face on the topic are sure to leave his head pounding again.
By Marc Siciliano (marcs797)
Here we go again. Multiple reports of Crosby’s expected return are flooding the google riverbeds. Unfortunately, the variety of conclusions they have drawn only serve to confirm the true uncertainty of this particular type of injury.
In the nicest, most politically correct and ‘Crosby’ way possible, Sid asked for some space from the people that have been hounding him since he was a boy last week, never hesitating to express the lack of a timetable for his return. Now, just a week later, one of the doctors that sat on the same side of the microphones as Crosby is the one firing up the guys behind them. Queue the speculation, brought about by the same man who attempted to quell it just over ten days ago.
The effects of brain trauma can be very stressful, particularly because of the lack of physical evidence showing progress. This opens the door for speculation and opinion amongst even the most elite health professionals. The only one who will truly have any real idea of when he is getting close to ready is Crosby himself.
Your doctor is supposed to be the guy that helps you out and makes your recovery as easy as possible. Yet here is Mr. Carrick, ultimately speculating (though with a thorough understanding of the topic) on the health of Crosby. This leads the media to focus on that same topic, never allowing Crosby to take a mental break from the thoughts of how his concussion is affecting his health. Rather than just focusing on tomorrow, he’s forced to constantly draw comparisons to how he felt yesterday, making him rehash each symptom and dissect it in his mind, even if it’s something he might have forgotten about if he did not have to recall it.
One of the biggest challenges he will face will be the mental hurdle he will have to overcome in order to play his normal game. Crosby is so effective because he is so aggressive and competitive (among other things), and to play hesitant would be a huge hindrance to his game.
In order to do that, he’s going to have to put the concussion and this past year behind him and simply move on. While it is definitely a realistic goal, it will be all the more difficult with the amount of questions he is sure to face on the subject.
Unfortunately, all of this speculation revolves around whether or not he can even make physical contact in a team-controlled environment – this isn’t necessarily even about an upcoming game. The slow pace of the offseason likely added fuel to the media fire, but it would be the same during the season given the name of the player involved.
When he finally steps back onto the ice for a meaningful game, he will be bombarded with questions about his status immediately after. It comes with being the face of your league, but it will do him no favors as he tries to make his mental injury an afterthought. How do you put something behind you if you’re constantly being reminded of it?
At one point or another, everyone has thought about how bad it would be for the league if Sidney Crosby weren’t around anymore. We all talk about how this game needs him, and then we begin to speculate about when we can have him back. But the speculation does not help, and it is sure to continue well after he rejoins the team. If anyone is capable of returning to such a high-level of play, it would be the hard-working #87, but it can only happen on his terms – so let it.