August is here and school is back in session! Make sure you are protecting your loved ones from backpack back pain. Backpacks that are too heavy can cause problems for kids including back, neck, and shoulder pain as well as contributing to poor posture. While it’s common these days to see children carrying as much as a quarter of their body weight, the American Chiropractic Association (ACA) recommends a backpack weight no more than 5% to 10% of a child’s weight.
Here are some other helpful tips:
- If your child will carry a heavy load, opt for a two strap backpack instead of a one strap side bag.
- Make sure the straps are adjusted properly. Do not wear the backpack low on your back-your back will pay!
- Choose a backpack with adjustable padded straps and a padded back panel.
- If a backpack has a hip belt, wear it to improve balance and take some strain off sensitive neck and shoulder muscles.
- Check that your padded backpack feels comfortable and not overly heavy. If it does, lighten the load with only essential items inside.
- Wear your backpack only when needed. If you are waiting for the bus, take your backpack off and when picking back up, make sure to bend your knees and lift it to your shoulders.
These tips can help to save your child from back pain. Another way to combat back pain is continuing to visit your Chiropractor! Schedule your appointment with Dr. Jeffrey Klein, Klein Chiropractic Center, West Chester, PA, who can assess your child’s back pain and treat it.