January is National Winter Sports TBI awareness month. What’s TBI? TBI stands for Traumatic Brain Injury—concussions and other forms of serious brain injury that can lead to severe complications. This winter, with activities like skiing and snowboarding in full swing (not to mention the risk of slipping on ice!), take some time to learn about TBIs and how to avoid them .
- According to the NIH, “The best treatment for TBI is prevention.” Avoid getting a TBI in the first place by wearing a helmet when you’re playing contact sports, biking, or skiing.
- Sometimes symptoms of TBI show up immediately. Other times, they may show up only after a few weeks. Even if you feel fine after the injury, get medical help immediately!
- Hundreds of thousands of people per year are injured while participating in winter sports each year. The American Academy of Orthopaedi Surgeons recommends that you always have someone with you while engaging in a winter sport, and that you wear the proper equipment (helmets, googles, etc.).
- If you have kids that are participating in winter sports, make sure they wear helmets—but make sure you’re wearing helmets too! The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia points out that “children learn safety habits by watching you.”
Winter sports are incredibly fun, and a great way to get some exercise! With some safety tips in mind, you can have a great time while keeping your brain in great shape.