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August kicks off back-to-school season, and as such, backpacks are in high demand. However, don’t be fooled by the styles and the trends. Research shows that more than 60% of students have back-related pain due to carrying over-packed or ill-sized backpacks. Between 1999 and 2000, for instance, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission reported that more than 5,400 ER visits were related to injuries caused by backpacks. Greater care should be taken when choosing a backpack, as a weighty bag affects the neck, shoulder, and spine!

Backpack Features To Consider When Purchasing

Just because a backpack is stylish or trendy, or even dons a famous name brand does not mean it will protect the back. When shopping for a backpack, look for one that has wide, adjustable, padded straps that will help to distribute the weight of the bag evenly across the back. The padding also helps to prevent the straps from digging into the shoulders and causing further pain.

Size Considerations When Purchasing Backpacks

One mistake that people commonly make when purchasing a backpack is getting one that is too big. You might think that it will be “grown into,” or that it is needed to carry all the extra materials to and from home but carrying an oversized bag could injure the back. Also consider that the larger the bag, the more materials get placed into it, and the more weight is placed on the back muscles. A good rule of thumb is to make sure the backpack does not go below 4” below the waist and 2” below the shoulders.

Weight Considerations In Selecting A Backpack

As the school year progresses, the backpack will accrue excess materials. It is important to remember that the weight of a full backpack should not exceed more than 10% of the carrier’s body weight (for example, a 100-pound person should not carry more than 10 pounds on the back). Overloading a backpack will cause stiff necks, sore shoulders, and back pain!

Experiencing Back Neck Or Shoulder Pain

If the damage has already been done by carrying around a heavy backpack, there is still hope. The chiropractic team at Caron Chiropractic can ease back pain, correct posture, and remove spinal misalignments through regular chiropractic care. If carrying a backpack has caused you or your children to suffer from back pain, follow these tips – and make it a priority to visit Caron Chiropractic to take care of your spine. Call (651) 255-9999 or email to schedule a consultation today!

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