It’s time to go back to school! In the spirit of school days just around the corner, it’s time we all learn a valuable lesson to keep our kids (and ourselves) pain-free. Back pain is very common, even for children and teens, but what is the culprit? National School Backpack Awareness Day is September 15th, 2021, and we want you to know that heavy, ill-fitting backpacks can be the cause of your child’s back pain. If ignored, it can lead to worse back problems for them later in life.
Is Carrying a Heavy Backpack Bad?
It makes sense that the more weight being added to the backpack, the more pressure there will be on the child’s back, which can lead to back pain. This is especially true for older children who need to transport heavy textbooks and binders and who may not have adequate time to go to their locker. Follow these tips to ensure proper backpack usage and to prevent back pain.
The heaviest items should be packed toward the back and the lighter items toward the front. It is also important to utilize the compartments of the backpack to evenly distribute the weight.
According to Johns Hopkins, a backpack with only one strap isn’t as effective at distributing the weight as bags with two straps, and therefore may strain muscles. Additional effects of carrying a heavy backpack on one shoulder are poor posture, improper spinal curvature, neck pain, and muscle spasms.
Always remember that a backpack should fit close to the body with straps that are at least two inches wide and tightened appropriately enough that the backpack is not sagging.
Because extra weight puts more stress on joints and ligaments, it’s important to always encourage a healthy body weight for your children’s age and size.
Total Chiropractic Care Can Help Manage Backpack Related Pain
Always encourage your children to tell you about any discomfort they are feeling that may be caused by a heavy backpack. As their parent, look out for telltale signs yourself such as your child struggling to put their backpack on or to take it off, your child leaning forward to carry their backpack, or unexplained shoulder pain, back pain, or headaches. Also, keep in mind that regular adjustments will keep the spine strong, and muscles and ligaments relaxed! If you have any questions, feel free to contact our office at (631) 447-2299 or fill out our contact form.