Football and mental health a complex mosaic

January 18, 2013

Head injury is just one of many factors that may have played a part in recent suicides among former NFL players. Eric Hipple, our outreach coordinator and a former NFL quarterback, recently spoke with Sports Illustrated’s Peter King about the need to address depression, chronic pain, and a host of career transition issues that players may face upon their retirement. The focus onchronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), a degenerative condition often caused by multiple blows to the head, as a contributor in some recent high-profile suicides can overshadow other common post-retirement challenges that can influence the well-being of former players, King and Hipple maintain.  (Evidence of CTE was recently discovered in the brain of retired NFL linebacker Junior Seau, who committed suicide last May). Rather, CTE “should be part of a mosaic of the post-career player issues. But it shouldn’t be the only thing experts study when lives go so tragically wrong,” King writes. Read more…