MARQUETTE — 1.4 million people are affected by concussions each year and it’s not just athletes that need to worry.

Northern Michigan University students and faculty gathered to gain some insight on the latest information and research about concussions. Dr. Julianne Kirkhan was brought to campus today as part of NMU’s Psychology Department’s colloquium series organized by the Psi Chi chapter. Kirkhan discussed many of the issues that come with having a concussion as well as why it is important to understand what goes on inside the brain after any type of traumatic injury.

“It’s really important that psychologists understand what happens in concussions because many social workers and psychologists will then be required to treat people who have problems with concentration or processing speed, attention, or memory,” said Kirkhan.

Concussions usually get discussed when talking about sports injuries, but Kirkhan said that others injured can benefit from the latest research as well.

“Concussion is a very complicated matter,” said Kirkhan. “It is a matter national importance because it is an epidemic in our country. The recognition of concussion effects, particularly in young athletes and collegiate athletes, has really driven a lot of the research.”

$17 million is spent each year on concussion care.