Ramblings of an Emergency Physician in Texas
I’m a big fan of helmets…
(Photo with permission).
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I’m curious, when you see people with just the half-helmets, do you tend to see jaw injuries, too? When I ride, I always have my full face because, well, I like to chew my food. I know many people who argue that in most motorcycle get-offs, it’s your chin that gets injured more often, even if that might not be life threatening.
What kind of accident was this? Skateboarding? Rollerblading? Mountain Biking? Most of the helmets at my house have some major scrapes on them, but nothing as big as this. What’d they run into? the pavement?
I don’t know how to do whatever that guy did up there ^ but I mentioned you in a post http://medi-medi-mary.blogspot.com/2007/12/ahh-good-old-days-when-i-wasnt.html
Helmets and leathers are good. Motorcycle vs car. Car pulled out to cross the highway. Motorcycle was traveling at approx 60 mph and t-boned the car. Rider was wearing a helmet and full leathers. Fx distal fib w/ sprain. Nothing else wrong.
I fell off a horse last summer. Helmet cracked. I had nothing more than a concussion.
I’ve laid a couple of bikes down over the years… and always walked away with skin and cranium intact because of helmet and leathers.
Problem with leathers? Hot… damned hot… particularly in the summer. There’s a solution, however; cooling vests. They make these phase-change packs that fit in a carrier (looks like a bullet-proof vest carrier) and it goes underneath your leathers. Keeps you cool for a good 60-90 minutes, and can be recharged by taking out the packs and throwing them in ice water for about 10 minutes.
There are other options. Vanson makes perforated leathers that still hold your hide together, but have holes punched in them so that air flows. Aerostich, a company out of Minnesota, makes some great motorcycle clothing that has an amazing following–of people who’ve worn theirs through crash after crash, send it in for repairs, and continue wearing.
But, helmets… I can’t believe how many riders want to ride without helmets. I’m hard headed, but not as hard as steel or concrete. I wear mine, and I drive slow.
I remember a while back someone talking about how helmet laws resulted in an “increase in head injuries”. From what I can remember, it turns out that the increase in head injuries was due to people surviving things that would have otherwise just killed them outright–the reported increase was in head injuries treated at the hospital. You don’t treat someone whose head busted open like a cantaloupe because they weren’t wearing their helmet.
I miss someone very much for many years. He was riding his motorcycle VERY SLOWLY, less than 15 mph. Got sideswiped by a teenage driver and that was it. Knew the girl who hit him too and she sure was wrecked. I drive by that intersection every two or three months and it always hurts. He had no helmet, thought they were for pussies. Always wore leather though because that did look cool. He was young. Mmm hmm.
I wish I’d saved my middle son’s bicycle helmets long enough to photograph them. Kid killed 3 helmets. One looked like an egg that had been dropped – R occiput. The second — hit a tree branch that would otherwise have wiped out frontal lobes. I forget what he did to the third one, but it wasn’t in much better condition than the first two. I was mad the first time, until I realized he’d been wearing it when he destroyed it and we weren’t on our way to the ER. After the second I started shopping sales to keep ahead of him.
He probably saved other kids in the neighborhood, too. The younger kids all followed him around and, unlike most of the parents, he was able to convince them that bicycle helmets were cool. I think it was the way he kept sending them home if they showed up without the helmet.
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