Preventing Spinal Cord Injuries
The following list offers tips on how to prevent spinal cord injuries (SCI):
- Motor vehicle crashes are the number one cause of SCI. Wear a seat belt every time you are in a motor vehicle. Make sure that your children are properly buckled into a child safety seat, booster seat, or seat belt as appropriate.
- Keep firearms and ammunition locked in a cabinet or safe when not in use. The second leading cause of SCI is violence, most often related to firearms use.
- Prevent falls using a step stool with a grab bar to reach objects on high shelves; installing handrails on stairways; installing window guards to keep young children from falling out of windows; and using safety gates at the top and bottom of stairs when young children are around.
- Play sports safely. Wear all required safety gear, and never engage in head-first moves, such as spearing (in football, using the helmet to tackle) or sliding head-first into a base. Avoid hitting the boards with your head in ice hockey. Insist on spotters when performing new or difficult moves in gymnastics.