Concern over weight of children's school bags
Post by Karl Phillips
on 13 March 2012 in Health & Wellbeing
Health professionals have expressed concern over the weight of bags being carried around by school children.
Youngsters regularly have to shoulder bags containing a large number of heavy textbooks and computer equipment. Doctors have said children risk sustaining injuries and causing long-term damage if they regularly carry bags which weigh more than 15 per cent of their bodyweight.
According to a report by the Daily Mail newspaper, children who carry their rucksacks over just one shoulder or on the crook of their elbow, rather than over both shoulders, are at even greater risk. It's claimed that half of all children suffer back pain by the age of 14 and doctors have reported a rise in the number of youngsters suffering spinal abnormalities.
Sean McDougall, chief executive of BackCare, a charity which aims to educate people about back pain, described the situation as a "healthcare time bomb".
He said: "If children are getting back pain so young then there is the potential they will have it for the next 70 to 80 years, which leads to an enormous physical and emotional cost.
"Children's skeletons are still growing so carrying heavy bags can cause lasting damage. Parents should insist that their children pack their bags only with what they need for the next day and ensure that they are worn on both shoulders."
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