Doctors' tips for backpack safety - 21 News Now, More Local News for Youngstown, Ohio -

Doctors' tips for backpack safety

Updated: Aug 25, 2013 10:06 AM
© iStockphoto / Thinkstock © iStockphoto / Thinkstock

SUNDAY, Aug. 25 (HealthDay News) -- If made well and used properly, backpacks are ideal for carrying school books and supplies, but they can be uncomfortable and even lead to injury if they're too heavy or if children don't wear them properly, doctors warn.

"When used correctly, backpacks are the most efficient way to carry a load and distribute the weight among some of the body's strongest muscles," Dr. Eric Wall, at the orthopedic surgery division of Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, said in a center news release. "However, parents need to carefully select a backpack to ensure that they are comfortable and do not cause injury."

Doctors at the medical center recommend the following backpack guidelines for parents:

Keep it light. A backpack should be lightweight and no more than 15 or 20 percent of a child's body weight.

Look for padding. A child's backpack should have two wide and padded shoulder straps and a cushioned back.

Consider straps. Children's backpacks should have a waist strap. Parents should remind their children to also use both shoulder straps and make sure they are tight.

Keep it balanced. Students should organize their books so the heaviest are centered. They should also spread out their supplies, using all of the backpack's compartments.

Lighten the load. Encourage kids to stop at their locker to remove any unnecessary books from their backpack so they are not carrying extra weight during the day.

Teach proper lifting. Children should bend their knees and use their legs when lifting a backpack.

Be aware of surroundings. Remind children to not swing their backpack if other people are standing nearby. They should also not leave their backpack on the floor where someone might trip over it.

Backpacks often lead to shoulder or back pain. Children who complain about this discomfort should be evaluated by a doctor, the experts advised.

More information

The American Academy of Pediatrics provides more information on backpack safety.

Copyright © 2013 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

*DISCLAIMER*: The information contained in or provided through this site section is intended for general consumer understanding and education only and is not intended to be and is not a substitute for professional advice. Use of this site section and any information contained on or provided through this site section is at your own risk and any information contained on or provided through this site section is provided on an "as is" basis without any representations or warranties.
  • More From wfmj.comMore>>

  • Fired band director says he fixing vulgar culture

    Fired band director says he fixing vulgar culture

    Thursday, July 31 2014 9:34 PM EDT2014-08-01 01:34:18 GMT
    The fired Ohio State University marching band director says he was working to change its sexualized culture when he was dismissed.More >>
    The fired Ohio State University marching band director says he was working to change its sexualized culture when he was dismissed.
    More >>
  • Ohio theme park tries to top shaved-heads record

    Ohio theme park tries to top shaved-heads record

    Thursday, July 31 2014 9:27 PM EDT2014-08-01 01:27:36 GMT
    MASON, Ohio (AP) - A southwestern Ohio amusement park will try to top a Guinness record for the most heads shaved simultaneously to help raise awareness and money to fight cancer. Kings Island says more than 200 hair stylists from Great Clips salons in Cincinnati, Dayton, Columbus, Cleveland, Lima and Toledo will shave heads Friday at the park north of Cincinnati. The Guinness World Records website says the current record at 182 heads shaved simultaneously was achieved by Cancer Council ACT-...More >>
    MASON, Ohio (AP) - A southwestern Ohio amusement park will try to top a Guinness record for the most heads shaved simultaneously to help raise awareness and money to fight cancer. Kings Island says more than 200 hair stylists from Great Clips salons in Cincinnati, Dayton, Columbus, Cleveland, Lima and Toledo will shave heads Friday at the park north of Cincinnati. The Guinness World Records website says the current record at 182 heads shaved simultaneously was achieved by Cancer Council ACT-...More >>
  • Hundreds of pet rats rescued from Ohio apartment

    Hundreds of pet rats rescued from Ohio apartment

    Thursday, July 31 2014 9:23 PM EDT2014-08-01 01:23:19 GMT
    KETTERING, Ohio (AP) - Humane Society workers have rescued hundreds of pet rats from an apartment in suburban Dayton apparently left after the renter was evicted. The Humane Society of Greater Dayton found as many as 300 so-called "fancy" or "pocket" pet rats in the studio apartment in Kettering after responding to a complaint Thursday morning. Humane Society official Sheila Marquis tells the Dayton Daily News the animals make great pets for children but breed rapidly if they aren't spayed a...More >>
    KETTERING, Ohio (AP) - Humane Society workers have rescued hundreds of pet rats from an apartment in suburban Dayton apparently left after the renter was evicted. The Humane Society of Greater Dayton found as many as 300 so-called "fancy" or "pocket" pet rats in the studio apartment in Kettering after responding to a complaint Thursday morning. Humane Society official Sheila Marquis tells the Dayton Daily News the animals make great pets for children but breed rapidly if they aren't spayed a...More >>
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Worldnow and WFMJ. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms