With classes at school in full swing, students once again have to lug around their backpacks filled with books and school supplies. While this might be the norm, it doesn’t mean that it’s something parents could just ignore the underlying problem of carrying heavy backpacks. According to a study by the American Chiropractic Association, children are now experience back pain much earlier than previous generations, with overweight backpacks among the chief causes. Even more alarming, U.S. Consumer Safety Commission reports say that more than 7,000 people were sent to the ER for backpack-related injuries in just one year.
As a result, chiropractors in Vancouver and elsewhere are constantly warning parents against the risks.
Damage to the Body
The back is not the only part of the body that is affected. Carrying heavy weight on the shoulders can even lead to neck pain due to the forward head posture the body is forced into. The shoulders can get strained too because of the effort it takes to hold up the heavy load. The hips can also take quite the damage as these can become sore if a child bends forward too much to offset the backward pull of the backpack. Lastly, children can experience knee pain as well from the change of walking pattern due to the improper weight distribution.
How Chiropractors Help
At the very least, a Vancouver chiropractor can give a little insight for both children and parents so they can have a better understanding of possible backpack-related complications. They can offer preventative tips as well. For instance, making sure that the backpack doesn’t exceed five to ten percent of your child’s body weight could be of great help. Choose backpacks that are just the exact length of the torso and have padded straps and backs as well.
Of course, if your child is already experiencing some discomfort, chiropractic care might be necessary. Chiropractors will first diagnose your child for problems he may have with his back or posture and come up with a treatment plan that can best alleviate any pain. Parents have nothing to worry about for their children’s safety because chiropractors are trained professionals and they employ different, gentler types of methods for their younger patients. They can also give out exercise tips to help manage pain if your child does have backpack-related injuries. Visiting for a chiropractic adjustment once in a while doesn’t hurt either.
Backpack Safety Tips, American Chiropractic Association
The Dangers Of Heavy Backpacks — And How Kids Can Wear Them Safely, The Huffington Post