At first, glance, wearing your helmet might seem like pure common sense. Unfortunately, we still see many people these days that aren’t wearing helmets when they are riding a bike, rollerblading, or involved in other outdoor activities.
In my clinical work, I see many people that have suffered a mild traumatic brain injury due to not wearing a helmet in a situation where it was called for. We’re seeing everything from mild traumatic brain injury and concussion to people who have had open head injuries and lost parts of their brain because of trauma.
Wearing your helmet is one of the simple things you can do to actively prevent or decrease the risk of suffering a significant injury to the brain. This applies to any type of wheeled sport, whether it’s a motorcycle, bicycle, scooter, or rollerblade. When you fall during one of these activities, and your legs come out from underneath you, the first thing to hit the pavement is often your head.
Many agencies and organizations have collected research and statistics. This includes the insurance industry, highway, and safety divisions. The website helmets.org helps to provide a clear picture of a profile for the most likely candidates getting hurt on bicycles due to not wearing helmets.
The composite profile for bicycle fatality is a sober male over 16 who is not wearing a helmet while riding on a major road as he crossed an intersection in an urban area on a summer evening when he was hit by a car.
A statistic from a major U.S. city within the past decade is that 74% of fatal bike crashes involved a head injury. Of that 74 percent, a staggering 97 percent were not wearing a helmet. This is irrefutable evidence that if you want to stay alive during a bicycle crash and avoid significant head injury, you must wear a helmet.
The numbers paint a very clear picture that helmets save lives. Of equal importance is that they preserve health and reduce the risk of compromised brain function. This is not to say that if you’re wearing a helmet, you won’t have some kind of brain injury. However, you are significantly reducing your odds of suffering a severe brain injury that could affect you throughout your life.
It’s also worth noting that the price point for a good, solid, approved helmet only ranges between $15 to $30.
Of course, the value of wearing a helmet doesn’t just extend to riding a bike or rollerblading. You should see it as mandatory for you and your family to wear them in all activities other than walking (e.g., skiing, white water sports, etc.).
Check out our booklet, The Big Umbrella™, for The Cognitive Action Plan™. In it, you’ll find recommendations that include and go beyond protecting your head from concussions and Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI).
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