At Highland Family Chiropractic we are extremely aware of the homework and textbook loads that children in East Cobb are bringing home, because our families are a part of the community as well. It is an issue that we address daily with our own families, so we decided to help you and your family as well.
The Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates that over 21,000 injuries in the emergency room and doctor’s office are due to injuries related to backpacks. Backpack safety is a growing concern in the last few years, mainly because we do not know how to correctly choose the appropriate backpack, and then we usually do not wear them correctly. When choosing a backpack, make sure it is lightweight, has wide padded shoulder straps, has a waist strap, has multiple compartments, and has a padded back. When fitting the backpack, make sure the pack fits between the shoulder blades and the waist, and remember to use both straps so that the weight is equally distributed.
Here are a few things that you should examine before your student(s) start complaining about aching backs and shoulders:
- How heavy is your child’s backpack? According to The American Occupational Therapy Association, Inc., a child’s backpack should weigh no more than 15% of their body weight (7.5 lbs. for a 50 lb. child).
- How is your child’s posture? A stooped posture is a sure sign of your child’s backpack weighing too much.
- Does your child complain about back or shoulder pains, and/or tingling arms? Learning how to effectively pack a backpack can help reduce back pain and avoid health problems.