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Heavy School Backpacks Can Cause Injury PDF Print E-mail
Written by San Fernando Valley Sun   
Thursday, 06 September 2012 04:31

Millions of students including children are heading backto- school with backpacks that are over-loaded and can cause injury. While college students often carry heavy books and a computer, fifty percent of children have experienced at least one episode of low back pain, with 15% experiencing frequent or continual pain said Dr. burak Ozgur, a back and spine specialist practicing in Orange County. Research he said indicates that this may be due to the improper use of backpacks.

Dr. Ozgur, offers these tips to avoid injury and make sure you children don't end up with chronic back and spine problems:

• The weight of the backpack should be less than 10-15% of a child's body weight to avoid injury.

• Check those straps - wide straps help carry the weight and narrow straps can pinch a nerve. If there is a waist strap, use it to help balance the load.

• Use a lightweight, Nylon Bag not a fancy leather heavy pack - the bag should be as light as possible so you don't add weight with the bag itself.

• Avoid the popular messenger bags that are slung over the shoulder - they can cause spine misalignment.

• Wheels? Look for rolling packs so kids can roll the weight versus carry it!

• Lift it properly - teach children to bend at the knees and lift with their legs.

College students and parents of small children should consider weighing their backpack and look for alternatives to ease their load, including unpacking and repacking it each day with only the bare necessities.

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Last Updated on Thursday, 06 September 2012 04:33