Spinal Cord Injury Prevention Safety Tips
- Always wear a seat belt.
- Secure or buckle children into age- and
weight-appropriate child safety seats.
- Secure or buckle children under 12 years old in the
back seat to avoid air bag injuries.
- Never drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
- Do not ride in a car with a driver who is impaired
by alcohol or drugs.
- Prevent others from driving while impaired by
alcohol or drugs.
- Do not use a cell phone or any item that may be a
distraction to your driving.
Sport Safety Tips
Sports and recreation activities are associated with
approximately 18 percent of all SCIs. Below are
safety tips to help make sports and recreation
- Always wear a helmet when riding a motorcycle, bike,
skateboard, when skating, roller-skating or
- Wear a helmet when playing football, ice hockey and
running bases in baseball and softball.
Firearms are a leading cause of spinal cord injury
(Berkowitz 1998). If you have firearms in your home,
the following steps can make your home safer:
- Keep firearms stored unloaded in a locked cabinet or
- Store bullets securely in a separate location (Mercy
- Educate school coaches, community sports league
officials and coaches, referees, public swimming
organizations, and sports arena owners about the
risks of spinal cord injuries during sports and
recreational activities. For example, provide
sessions for football coaches about proper tackling
techniques and proper conditioning exercises for the
neck, encourage referees to enforce tackling rules
in your community leagues, and increase awareness
among administrators and coaches about proper
handling and evaluation of a player injured during
practice or competition (CDC 1990).
Spinal Cord Injury Network Hotline
A toll-free information and referral service to
help paraplegics, quadriplegics, and their
family members find the services they need to
improve their quality of life.
National Spinal Cord Injury Association (NSCIA)
NSCIA works to develop better programs and
services and acts as a community advocate for
improved access, housing, transportation,
employment, and leisure time activities for
persons with disabilities.
National Office: 800-962-9629
Resource Center: 301-588-6959
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