US Soldiers Need Better Helmets to Protect Against TBIs

Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) are widely known as the “signature wounds” of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars and are the basis for many veterans compensation claims. They are primarily brought on by blasts and explosions, and can occur even though helmets are being worn.

Traditional military helmets were not designed to offer protection against improvised explosive devices (IEDs), and therefore inadequately protect against them. As IEDs have become the Iraqi militants’ preferred weapon, a new helmet is warranted.

According to the Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center, around 140,000 soldiers have been diagnosed with brain injuries since 2006. Between January and March of 2011, approximately 10,000 brain injuries were reported.

Only a few hundred of those injuries were attributed to bullets and/or projectiles. The rest of them were brain injuries ranging from mild to severe and were caused by energy blast waves, falls, and/or blows to the head.

The military is currently scrambling to develop and produce a helmet that offers multiple facets of protection. Not only must it defend against shrapnel and bullets, the new helmet must be able to protect its wearer from blast waves and blunt blows.

The military is coupling “cutting-edge research” on brain reactions to blunt force with new age materials to design the helmet’s shell and interior padding. The Pentagon has spent hundreds of millions of dollars developing a better helmet. To do so, however, they must first understand the nature of the injury.

The helmets cannot be produced fast enough. A recent study linked older veterans, who, at one time had endured a head injury with a risk of dementia twice that of veterans without head injuries.

If you are a disabled veteran who has been denied disability compensation or have not yet applied for benefits from the VA, a South Florida disability attorney from Veterans Help Group is ready to help. To learn if you are entitled to certain programs and benefits contact our veterans disability rights firm today 1-855-855-8992.