A photo released by the Facebook page, PediMom, went viral last weekend because it showcased the worst-case scenario for kids who ride bikes. The post shows a children’s bike helmet completely destroyed to the point where it’s almost unrecognizable. Worried parents were quick to leave comments on Facebook, but studies show that many will still neglect enforcing a helmet rule with their kids.
The post claims that in a study by the University of Michigan, one in five parents admit that their children do not wear helmets while they’re biking around. Kids are more likely to try to perform stunts, ride fast, or do other thrilling but dangerous things, so without a helmet, there’s a high chance they will get hurt. On top of that, both reckless and responsible drivers could hit a biking child in their neighbourhood, and those without a helmet risk never biking home again.
The person who posted the photo works in the pediatric emergency room for head trauma, and she sees many cases of kids falling from their bikes. Some are struck by cars, and others simply lose control of their bikes. The post shows a black bike helmet that seems like it was hit by a jackhammer multiple times: half of it is gone and what’s left looks like jagged rocks. Dr. Hess, the founder of PediMom, concludes her post by prompting parents to imagine what would’ve happened to the child if there was no helmet involved.
Dr. Hess started her Facebook page because it is her passion to help parents keep their kids safe. While the case is scary and tragic, it was a good wake-up call for many parents who don’t make their kids understand the importance of wearing helmets while biking. A good way to do this is to wear helmets ourselves to show our kids that we value its importance as well; it’s not just something for little kids who haven’t mastered a bike yet.
Thanks to online support like hers, many parents are able to find important information on protecting their children. Whether it be grim reminders, parenting advice, or opinions on parenting-related scientific studies, online forums and social media platforms keep us informed and alert.