Are Kids Packing Future Back Pain?
Back pain and spine problems are common in young people. Research has been done to try to determine whether carrying heavy backpacks for school has anything to do with the problem. These authors looked through the literature and summed up current thinking on the issue.
The research makes it clear that a backpack or book bag weighing more than 15 to 20 percent of a child's weight is related to back pain. Wearing or loading the backpacks or bags incorrectly only adds to the problem. And it is known that kids with back pain are more likely to have back pain as adults.
Here are some highlights the authors found in the research:
The authors point out that no evidence connects heavy backpacks to potentially serious spinal deformities such as scoliosis.
William G. Mackenzie, MD, et al. Backpacks in Children. In Clinical Orthopaedics and Related Research. April 2003. Vol. 409. Pp. 78-84.
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