Charleston, SC – It’s hard to believe that the summer is almost gone. In just a few short weeks it will be time to pack the kids off to school for another year. Before you send little Johnny off to meet the school bus in the morning, take a moment to check the weight of his backpack. While back pain is pervasive amongst adults, a new and disturbing trend has identified that children are now experiencing back pain at younger and younger ages.
While school books are a necessary component of the educational process, there are precautions you should take to ensure that your child does not suffer long term back pain due to lugging around a heavy backpack. The American Chiropractic Association recommends that a backpack be no more than 10% of a child’s body weight. Also, it is important to encourage your child to use both shoulder straps when carrying a backpack. While it might not be “cool,” to use both straps, it could potentially eliminate years of unnecessary back pain. Wide, padded straps are also very important. Non-padded straps are uncomfortable and can cut into your child’s shoulders. If you have taken these precautions and the backpack is still too heavy, talk to your child's teacher to see if your child could leave the heaviest books at school, and bring home only lighter materials or workbooks. If your child continues to experience back pain, or exhibits poor posture while sitting or standing, schedule an appointment with a chiropractor.
Chiropractors specialize in maximizing nervous system and musculoskeletal performance, injury prevention, and self-healing of the body if and when injuries occur. Chiropractors are licensed and trained to diagnose and treat patients of all ages and will use a gentler type of treatment for children. Doctors of chiropractic can also prescribe exercises designed to help children develop strong muscles, along with instruction in good nutrition, posture, and sleeping habits.
The South Carolina Chiropractic Association is a professional trade association representing Doctors of Chiropractic, Chiropractic Assistants, Chiropractic Students, and affiliates of the Chiropractic profession in South Carolina. Please visit us at www.scchiropractic.org to find a chiropractor in your area.