Once your child begins riding a bike, whether it is in a seat on your adult bike, a tricycle or a two-wheeled bike, he needs to wear a helmet every time. The Consumer Product Safety Commission states that 60 percent of bicycle-related deaths each year are due to head injuries. You may think that the most expensive helmet on the market must be the safest, but in reality, most brands are similar safety-wise, assuming they meet a few important standards.
Choose a bike helmet for your child that has been certified by the Consumer Product Safety Commission, verifying that it has been tested and proven to provide maximum protection for your child. These helmets will state the certification on the label and are available in a variety of price ranges.
Buy a helmet that fits your child correctly. Try the helmet on before purchasing and adjust the chin strap so that it fits snugly under the chin and does not slide around on the head when buckled. Many helmets come with several sets of foam-fitting pads -- thicker ones to fit a smaller head; thinner ones to fit a larger head -- ensuring the correct fit for a longer period of time.
Position the helmet on your child's head so that it is level across the top of the head. Never let your child wear the helmet tilted back on an angle. Likewise, the helmet should not tilt forward into your child's field of vision.
The safest helmet for your child is often simply the one that is worn correctly. Let your child choose her own helmet for a variety of approved options and she will be more inclined to wear it without a fight, especially if you model appropriate helmet use as well.
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