Are you at risk for a spinal cord injury?

Are you at risk for a spinal cord injury?

Are you at risk for a spinal cord injury?

Falls, motor vehicle accidents and sports injuries are all causes of spinal trauma. The Mayo Clinic reports that while the average age of individuals who suffer a spinal injury is 43; however, almost anyone of any age may experience this trauma. 

Some people are more likely to receive a spinal injury than others, and understanding your risk factors may help you avoid such an incident and protect your health. 

Driving habits

Poor driving habits may increase your risk of a spinal injury due to a car wreck. Tailgating, speeding and failing to wear a seatbelt may all lead to this type of trauma when an accident occurs. Damage to nerve fibers or the spine itself could lead to partial or complete paralysis. Obeying traffic laws and driving at the posted speed limit may reduce this risk. 

Age

Most people who experience a spinal injury are either under thirty or over the age of 65. While this risk factor may seem odd, there are several reasons behind it. Young people who reach driving age and participate in high school and college sports are often at risk for spinal injuries, and older people may suffer such trauma as the result of a fall. Wearing protective gear and avoiding unstable walking surfaces may protect you from a spinal injury. 

Gender

On average, men are more likely to experience a serious spinal injury than women. Sports injuries and acts of violence may play into this statistic. If you are male, remaining aware of the higher risk factor could help to keep you safe. 

Spinal cord injuries can range from permanent loss of feeling below the trauma site to localized numbness and loss of motor skills. Depending on the degree of injury, treatment and physical therapy may reduce the symptoms of a traumatic spinal injury.