There is increasingly more awareness of traumatic brain injuries or TBIs, including the physical and psychological effects they can have. Prevention is essential during certain activities and situations. By using and wearing the right equipment during activities, you can reduce the chances of suffering a TBI.

While many people may think of contact sports such as football, boxing, and soccer as being high-risk for TBIs, such injuries are not uncommon for cyclists, either. Wearing a bike helmet is an effective way to prevent head injuries. As you and your loved ones ride bikes this season, don’t forget to put on a helmet before you take off.

What is a TBI?

A traumatic brain injury typically occurs as the result of a significant blow to the head or neck. It can also occur when an object goes through brain tissue. For example, hitting your head violently against the ground in a fall or colliding with another person or object can cause a TBI.

Mild TBIs may only cause temporary issues such as headaches, dizziness, or nausea. However, a serious TBI might cause bleeding or bruising on the brain. The long-term effects of these types of TBIs can be loss of consciousness, convulsions or seizures, loss of coordination, and profound confusion. A person with a serious TBI may also become combative or irritable.

Bicycle Accidents and TBIs

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that more than 130,000 people are injured each year on bicycles, while the National Safety Council reports that a third of all non-fatal bike accidents include head injuries. Moreover, the Consumer Product Safety Commission says that brain injuries account for the majority of cycling-related head injuries seen in emergency rooms yearly.

These statistics clearly indicate that wearing a helmet is necessary whenever you’re on a bike.

The Importance of Wearing a Helmet

Putting on a helmet will not prevent you from crashing on your bike or having some other type of accident, no more than a seatbelt prevents car wrecks. But like seatbelts in a car, bike helmets help to minimize the risks and seriousness of potential head injuries during an accident.

Bike helmets are designed to absorb the energy generated by a crash. They contain a layer of crushable foam that controls the crash energy. A helmet extends your head’s stopping time by about six one-thousandths of a second, which reduces the peak impact experienced by the brain. With less impact on the brain, the chances of you suffering a TBI are much lower.

Helmet-Wearing Tips

You should always wear a helmet while on a bicycle. Even people who are experienced, avid riders should wear one. Of course, helmets work best when they’re intact and whole, so avoid wearing cracked helmets.

Helmets should fit snugly but go on easily. Always make sure the helmet fits properly and is not too small or too large. Straps on the helmet will allow you to make the necessary adjustments. The helmet should not sit too far back on the head. Also, avoid wearing anything thick under the helmet, as this reduces the helmet’s effectiveness.

The Bottom Line

Bike accidents are not uncommon, and the consequences of such incidents can be severe. Helmets are effective at cutting down on the risks of injuries to the head, so you should always wear one for biking activities. If you have been injured in a bike accident, you need to call the professionals at Friedman Law at 402-476-1093. Call today if you need legal guidance and learn about how to pursue a case.