Riding a tricycle is a good experience for children. They can learn skills and get stronger from riding and even from falling. Just as kids should always wear helmets when riding bikes, research shows that even tricycle riders should wear them.
A new study in the journal Pediatrics showed there were about 9,340 tricycle-related injuries treated in U.S. emergency rooms in 2012 and 2013. The head was the most frequently injured body part, and cuts on the face were the most common injury.Tricycle riders should wear a helmet.The study also showed boys were more likely than girls to turn up in the emergency room for tricycle injuries, and 2-year-olds had the highest frequency of injuries.
Most children are ready to ride a tricycle when they are around 3 years old, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).
The AAP offers the following tips for parents to help keep tricycle riders safe:
- Be consistent. Make sure your child wears a helmet every time he rides a tricycle.
- Make sure the helmet fits properly. A helmet should be worn squarely on top of the head, covering the top of the forehead. If it is tipped back, it will not protect the forehead. The helmet should not move around on the head or slide down over the child’s eyes when pushed or pulled. The chin strap should be adjusted to fit snugly. The helmet also should have a sticker inside stating that it meets Consumer Product Safety Commission standards.
- Wear a helmet yourself. Children learn best by watching you. Whenever you ride your bike, put on your helmet.
- Select a safe ride. Tricycles that are low to the ground with big wheels are less likely to tip over.
- Keep an eye on riders. Parents should watch children on tricycles to make sure they keep away from streets, driveways, cars and pools.