March is Brain Injury Awareness Month and the Brain Injury Alliance
of Washington is spreading the word.

Brain injuries are responsible for 2.8 million visits to American emergency rooms each year. Despite these lofty numbers, public awareness for this ailment is low.

BIAWA's Executive Director Deborah Crawley says that "brain injury is the number one cause of both death and disability for most ages, including
youth."

The three biggest groups most susceptible to brain injury are young children under age 4, teenagers, and adults over 65. Men are also more likely to get a brain injury than women.

So, what can you do to reduce the risk for yourself? This probably comes as no surprise, but wear your seatbelt. If you're riding a bicycle, unicycle, hoverboard, or motorcycle; wear a helmet! Not only is it common sense, but it's the law. Automobile accidents are the third-leading cause of all traumatic brain injuries. Wearing seatbelts and helmets are the number one defense from brain injuries.

The number one cause of brain injuries is falling. How can we minimalize the risk? Keeping a clean and tidy home goes a long way. The less clutter on the floor you have, the less likely you are to trip and fall.

More about the BIAWA

The Brain Injury Alliance of Washington was started in 1982 and is a non-profit organization and helps people who have had traumatic brain injuries. They also offer resources and information on brain injuries and have campaigned for laws to protect athletes from brain injury. They supported the Zackery Lystedt Law, preventing young athletes from returning to games in which they suffered apparent brain injuries such as concussions. This law has been wide-spread across all 50 states, and you can see it in action at the professional level with the NFL's concussion protocol.