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Experts stress importance of helmet safety in summer months

Matt DeMaria knows the importance of wearing a helmet when participating in wheeled sports / Danielle Apolinar (WGXA)

MACON, Ga. -- A recent study done by Safe Kids Worldwide shows that 47 percent of parents say a helmet isn't necessary when participating in wheeled sports, including biking, riding a scooter, skateboarding and roller blading.

According to the the Centers for Disease Control, about 26,000 children are seen yearly due to bike accidents and traumatic brain injuries.

Yameika Head, a pediatrician with Navicent Health, said that she sees an increase in children coming in with head injuries ranging from brain bruises to more severe injuries in the summer. She said traumatic brain injuries do happen in children, so it is important to teach kids when they are young to wear helmets.

She said when you are buying your kid a bike or skateboard or scooter, make sure to buy a helmet with it so they have it and can protect their heads.

She said when you are buying your kid a bike or skateboard or scooter, make sure you buy a helmet with it so they have it and can protect their heads.

Matt DeMarea, 14, said he always wears his helmet because he wants to be safe. He said his father, Peter, always encourages him to wear his helmet as well.

Peter DeMarea said he is a stickler for helmet use, especially because he got a concussion when he was younger while doing BMX. He said when he used to participate in BMX he never wore a helmet and suffered the consequences, so now he teaches his two sons the importance of helmet safety.

Peter DeMarea's younger son, Adam, 6, loves skateboarding. He said his favorite part is going fast, which is why he knows it is important to wear his helmet. He said once he fell and his helmet helped him because he fell head first.

Steve Murray, a longtime bicyclist, said he gets mad when he sees people of any age without a helmet. He said falling from a bike is like a pendulum: you fall and your head hits the hardest. He has fallen before and he knew that his helmet had protected him because he got a large splinter in the helmet, which would have been his skull.

Head said it is much easier to teach your kids about helmet safety than to deal with a doctor or emergency room visit.



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