Due to its ability to help kids stay mobile and carry all of their belongings, the backpack is a must-have tool for students. While this tool can do a lot of the lifting, having too heavy of a bag can contribute to spinal issues and back pain. If you’re a parent, you can avoid these challenges by optimizing your child’s backpack and taking steps to keep their cargo at an appropriate weight. To better illustrate these dangers and how to address them, here are a few facts every parent should know about backpack safety.
How Do Heavy Backpacks Impact Kids?
Heavy backpacks place stress on the shoulder and exert excess pressure along the spine. While it may not be noticed right away, this stress can damage nerves, joints, and tissues to cause a variety of injuries. Over time, this damage may contribute to lower back pain, shoulder problems, and mobility issues.
In addition, incorrect backpack use can intensify problems by impairing body mechanics. For example, carrying a strap with just one shoulder will place excessive pressure on one side of the body. If the bag isn’t at the right height, it may also impair a child’s posture and cause them to develop muscular and skeletal deformities.
How Can I Tell if a Backpack Is Too Heavy?
According to the American Chiropractic Association, a child’s bag should weigh no more than 10% of their body weight. For example, a 60-pound child’s bag should not exceed 6 pounds. If you notice that your child is straining, has poor posture, or experiences back pain while wearing their bag, reassess how heavy it really is.
What Can Kids & Parents Do to Improve Backpack Safety?
Apart from not overpacking, there are many other ways to parents and children can promote proper backpack safety. For starters, kids should only use bags that are sized for an appropriate fit. A properly fitted bag should offer a waist strap, a padded back, and two wide, padded shoulder straps.
While wearing the bag, straps should be tightened so that it remains close to the body and about two inches above the waist. To distribute weight more evenly, be sure to use all of the bag’s pockets and compartments. Throughout the day, your child can minimize harm by making an effort to unload at their locker between classes, as well as not running or bending with the backpack on.
If your child does develop back pain, seek immediate care from Chiropractic Associates of Platteville. Whether symptoms are due to backpack usage or a sports injury, this clinic will accurately pinpoint the source of the problem through in-depth physical evaluations. Depending on the results, this Grant County, WI, chiropractor will then develop a customized treatment plan to relieve pain, promote healing, and strengthen the body. To learn more about these services, visit this practice online, or call (608) 348-3156 to schedule an appointment.