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Carrying a Heavy Backpack Doesn't Cause Scoliosis!

A curved spine is Scoliosis. Carrying a heavy backpack can cause chronic back, neck and shoulder pain in your children, and can be a source of chronic, low level trauma. There is no evidence that the two are related, so far.

A Curved Spine
A curved spine is Scoliosis

The OrthoScan Spine Scan Device is a stand alone, hand held device that provides automated means for screening of spinal deformities postural disorders and range of motion and follow up.

OrthoScan Spine Scan Device

The OrthoScan Ortelius800 for Monitoring Spinal Deformities is a noninvasive radiation free system for monitoring and early diagnosis of kyphosis and scoliosis. Displaying the calculated angle of deformity, in a brief concise examination of less than one minute this user friendly system provides an accurate graphical image of the spine.

OrthoScan Ortelius800 for Monitoring Spinal DeformitiesScoliosis

For our kids, is carrying heavy backpacks causing health problems? Especially if they are carrying their backpack on only one shoulder or/and they have to walk to school, it might be causing problems if they are carrying more than ten to twenty percent of their body weight in their backpack.

Heavy Backpacks!
Heavy Backpacks, scoliosis

Seems to be fading is the fashion of carrying a backpack on only one shoulder. Instead of a single shoulder, most students have their backpacks strapped over both shoulders.

One Shoulder Backpack
One Shoulder Backpack, scoliosis

Does back pain exist for your child?

Back Pain
Back Pain, scoliosis

Does she walk bent over to the side?

Does she complain of tingling and numbness in her hands or arms?

Does she or he carry more than ten to twenty percent of their body weight in the pack?

You might want to, if you answered yes to all or any of these questions:

  • limit the weight your child carries in a backpack to ten to twenty percent of body weight
  • buy a backpack that has a hip belt and padded, wide shoulder straps

A Hip Belt
A Hip Belt, scoliosis

  • avoid single strap, messenger type bags for your child

Messenger Bags
Messenger Bags, scoliosis

  • teach your child to wear the pack over 2 shoulders
  • consider using a backpack that rolls

Rolling Backpack
Rolling Backpack, scoliosis

  • get your child looked at by their doctor.

Get Your Child Examined
Get Your Child Examined, scoliosis

Back pain is not as common in younger children and may be a sign of a more serious problem, such as an infection or tumor, a sport's injury, diskitis, disk herniation, or spondylolysis, though it is becoming more common in older adolescents. Don't always assume that your child's back pain is caused by a heavy backpack.

A Sport's Injury
A Sport's Injury, scoliosis

Sources: Leffert RD - Orthopedic Clin North Am - 01-Apr-2000; 31(2): 331-45

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