Is that pack causing a pain in the back?

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. An estimated 2,000 backpack-related injuries were treated at hospital emergency rooms, doctor’s offices, and clinics in 2007 [U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission National Electronic Injury Surveillance System Database-2007]. Wednesday, September 19, 2012, 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) Remind your child to use both straps to keep the pack straight and not sling it over one shoulder.
3) Look for a waist belt – as this belt will help keep the load distributed evenly.
4) Make sure the pack rests flat against your child’s back, and two inches below the shoulder blades and extend to waist level.
5) Check that the backpack never weighs more than about 10 percent of your child’s body weight.
6) Place the heaviest items (largest books) closest to the back of the backpack (closet to the spine).
7) Make sure that items in the backpack do not slide around.
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. We would be happy to answer your 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
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