bike safety 2As the weather begins to improve and the spring days become longer, a lot of families will start pulling out their bicycles from the garage. However, when you pull the bikes out, it’s important that you remember the bike helmets too.

A bike helmet can save your life. The effects of even a minor traumatic brain injury can be debilitating and last for years. Head injuries account for almost three fourths of the nearly 780 bicycle deaths that occur annually in the United States and according to the bicycle helmet safety institute, helmets completely prevent or reduce the severity of brain injury in two thirds of cases.

Reasons to wear a bike helmet:

  • Protect your head, face and brain from trauma by allowing the helmet to absorb the force of a fall or crash.
  • Improve your ability to see. A helmet visor can shade your face from the sun and prevent rain or snow from getting in your eyes.
  • Improve your visibility. A brightly colored helmet or a helmet with reflective strips can make you more visible to drivers.
  • Set a good example for others. In 21 states youth riders are required by law to wear helmets.
  • Protect your legal rights. Insurance companies will often claim in court that a bicyclist not wearing a helmet was negligent and thus argue against paying medical bills and damages.
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Article by: Emily Sieg, M.D.

Emily P. Sieg, M.D., is the director of neurotrauma for UofL Physicians – Restorative Neuroscience. She received her medical degree from Penn State College of Medicine. Dr. Sieg completed her residency in neurological surgery at Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center. She did one-year CAST accredited fellowships in Neurocritical Care and in Complex Spine Surgery at Penn State. Her research interests lie primarily in clinical and translational research in the field of neurotrauma and critical care. This includes spinal cord injury, brain trauma, and peripheral nerve injury.

All posts by Emily Sieg, M.D.
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