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Put A Lid On It Parents

How to Get Your Child to Wear a Helmet, Every Time

  • Begin the helmet habit with your child's first tricycle, bicycle, scooter, roller skates, inline skates, skateboard, snowboard or skis.

  • Let your child pick out the helmet. They are more likely to wear a helmet that they have helped to choose.

  • Be matter of fact and insist that your child always wear the helmet. Treat this as a non-negotiable subject no matter what age.

  • Set an example; always wear your own helmet.

    Remember: A helmet is a necessity, not an accessory. Since you can't anticipate when or where an accident may occur, a helmet should be worn every time you or your children bike, skate, ski or ride.

    Choosing a Helmet

    1) Try it on. The helmet must fit the shape of the head. It should be snug but not tight. Use the different size foam pads that come with the helmet to fine-tune the fit.

    2) The helmet should sit low and level, covering the top of the forehead - not tilted back or forward.

    3) When adjusting straps, the V formed by the straps on each side should meet just below the ear, and the chinstrap should be snug under the chin but allow for the mouth to open comfortably. Once the straps are secured properly, the helmet should not move from side-to-side or front-to-back.

    FACT: More than a third of children who wear helmets wear them improperly (helmet tipped back on the head or straps not fastened). Children who wear their helmets tipped back on their heads have a 52% greater risk of head injury than those whose helmets are fitted and worn properly.

    4) Bicycle helmets are acceptable for recreational inline skating, but aggressive skating, inline hockey or racing requires a multi-impact (hard shell) helmet. Today there are different helmets for each activity. For maximum safety, use a helmet designed for its intended use.

    Remember: Helmets are not forever. Replace a helmet as the head grows and always replace it after a crash, even if you cannot see any damage.

    Information courtesy Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital.