Preventing Traumatic Brain Injuries

By March 31, 2023Health Tips

We will wrap up our discussion of traumatic brain injuries (TBI) this week by discussing things that we can do to help prevent these injuries.

How can traumatic brain injuries be prevented?
We cannot prevent all brain injuries, but there are things that you can do to help reduce the risk of a traumatic brain injury. This includes:
  • Brain Injury Part IIAlways wear a seat belt in a motor vehicle.
  • Don’t drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs, including prescription medications that can impair the ability to drive. Warn your children, particularly teenagers, never to ride with a driver who is impaired in any way.
  • Always wear a helmet when riding a bicycle, skateboard, motorcycle, snowmobile, or any all-terrain vehicle.
  • Always wear appropriate head protection when playing baseball or contact sports, skiing, skating, snowboarding, or riding a horse.
  • Never use your phone while driving. Distracted driving is just as bad as driving under the influence of substances when it comes to causing accidents.
  • Pay attention to your surroundings. Distractions are not only a problem when driving, but also when walking. Don’t walk or especially cross the street while looking at your phone. Even talking on the phone using headphones, without looking at the screen, can often distract you from paying attention to things going on around you. Distractions can lead to falls, getting hit by a passing car, or wandering into dangerous situations unaware.
Special considerations for preventing TBI in children include:
  • Children should always ride in the back seat of a car, properly secured in a child safety seat or booster seat that is appropriate for their height and weight. Many parents allow children to ride without a booster seat or in the front seat much earlier than is recommended. Read the American Academy of Pediatrics guidelines here: Child Passenger Safety (
  • Young children should not ride all-terrain vehicles such as 4 wheelers, even with an adult driver.
  • Install safety gates at the top of a stairway.
  • Install window guards to prevent falls from windows.
  • Don’t let children play on fire escapes or balconies.
  • Use a nonslip mat in the bathtub or shower.
  • When possible, choose playgrounds that have shock-absorbing materials on the ground.
  • Regarding sports:
Special considerations for older adults to help prevent falls include:
  • Install handrails or grab bars in bathrooms.
  • Put a nonslip mat in the bathtub or shower.
  • Make sure there is adequate lighting in the home, particularly around stairways.
  • Keep stairs and floors clear of clutter.
  • Make sure stairways have adequate handrails.
  • Remove throw rugs.
  • Get regular vision checkups and always wear prescribed glasses.
  • Get regular exercise. Core strengthening exercises, as well as exercise such as Tai Chi and Yoga, are particularly helpful in improving balance as we get older.
If you have any questions about brain injuries, please log into your account and send us your question. We are here to help.

Dr. Anita Bennett MD – Health Tip Content Editor

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