Backpacks and Your Child

By Dr. Dan Van Roon • October 9th, 2009

With kids back in school and in the regular swing of things, take a closer look at their backpacks. In the Atlanta Journal-Constitution September 2008 issue, comes an article of concern about children carrying heavy backpacks. The article links these packs to an increase in musculoskeletal pains in children. The problem according to the article is that the weight of these packs upsets the balance in the spine, which can cause spinal and muscular problems.

The American Chiropractic Association suggests that children not carry packs weighing more than 10 or 15% of the child’s body weight. The International Chiropractors Association (ICA) also states that improper lifting and carrying by your child can also contribute to spinal stress. The solutions suggested by the Journal-Constitution article suggest lightening the pack as well as making sure the load carried is balanced. The ICA also suggests regular chiropractic checkups for your child to ensure proper spinal and nervous system function.

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