Is that pack causing a pain in the back?

Sep 14, 2011 -  7 tips for avoiding Backpack related discomfort.

It’s back to school time again, and with that comes shopping for new clothes, new shoes, and perhaps, a new backpack. More than 23,000 backpack-related injuries were treated at hospital emergency rooms, doctor’s offices, and clinics in 20071. Wednesday, September 21, 2011, is National School Backpack Awareness Day.

When picking out that backpack this year, remember these tips to help you make safer choices for your kids.

1) Look for well-padded straps to protect the nerves and blood vessels of the neck and shoulders.

2) Use both straps to keep the pack straight – do not sling over one shoulder.

3) Look for a waist belt – as this belt will help keep the load distributed evenly.

4) The pack should rest flat against your child’s back, and 2 inches below the shoulder blades and extend to waist level.

5) The back pack should never weigh more than 15% of the child’s bodyweight.

6) Place the heaviest items (largest books) closest to the back of the back pack (closet to the spine).

7) Make sure that items in the back pack do not slide around.

2 U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission National Electronic Injury Surveillance System (NEISS) Database (2007). Numbers quoted are estimated figures.

If you or your child is experiencing backpack related discomfort, and would like more information on how physical and/or occupational therapy can help, please contact any one of the locations listed below for any questions regarding services at ECHN or to schedule an appointment. Please note that ECHN’s physical therapy services are covered by Medicare, Medicaid, CIGNA, Blue Cross, ConnectiCare, Aetna, and other carriers.

Rehabilitation Services:
Manchester Memorial Hospital 860.647.6485
Rockville General Hospital 860.872.5261
The Rehab Center at Court House Plus 860.649.3369
CorpCare Occupational Health Center 860.533.6500
Rehabilitation Services at the Ellington Y 860.871.1078
Glastonbury Wellness Center 860.652.3181
Rehabilitation Services at Evergreen Walk 860. 533.4670
Woodlake at Tolland Rehabilitation & Nursing Center 860.872.2999

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