What Effects Do Helmets Have on Risk of Traumatic Brain Injury?
October 15th, 2014|
The Brain Injury Association of America estimates that 1.4 million citizens of the United States will suffer traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) this year. One of the best ways to prevent this type of injury is to wear a helmet when engaging in risky activity, such as riding a bike or playing contact sports. But it’s important to remember a helmet is only capable of protecting the head if it is designed and worn properly.
All Helmets Aren’t Equal
There are many factors that go into the effectiveness of a particular helmet, including the materials and structure of the equipment. That’s why the United States requires helmets to meet rigorous safety standards. These policies regulate not only the amount of force of impact the helmet should be able to sustain, but also what part of the head the helmet should cover. Any alterations made to a helmet may result in a traumatic brain injury in the event of an accident.
Did An Altered Helmet Cause One Man’s TBI?
An article from the International Business Times states experts believe the failure of a helmet that was modified and fitted with a camera may be to blame for the TBI that was suffered by Formula One driver, Michael Schumacher, during a skiing accident earlier this year. Reports indicate the helmet was heavily damaged in the crash, while the camera escaped unscathed.
What You Can Do To Stay Safe
At Fleschner, Stark, Tanoos & Newlin, we recognize the impact helmets have on reducing the number of serious traumatic brain injuries that occur each year. That’s why we would like to offer these tips to ensure the proper use of this life-saving piece of equipment:
- Only Use Approved Helmets- All motorcycle helmets should be approved by the Department of Transportation and should be marked with a DOT-Approved sticker. The Consumer Product Safety Commission regulates the safety of helmets used for bicycling, skiing, etc.
- Ensure Proper Fit- Most helmets should sit across the middle of the forehead. The Chinstrap should secure snuggly beneath the jaw, leaving the helmet with little room for movement.
- Don’t Compromise Integrity– Altering or modifying a helmet can create a risk of device failure and should be avoided.