The transportation of heavy school backpacks can have long-term repercussions for children’s health. Who says it is the doctor Paulo Pereira, coordinator of the campaign “Look for Your Back,”which warns of the importance of the correct choice of school backpacks.
“More and more children are subjected to the overloading of cargo, and most of the time, parents do not even think about the bad effects of this weight. The school backpack carries a huge amount of books and other materials that the child will probably not use on that day, a situation that requires extra attention on the part of the parents”, reveals the doctor Paulo Pereira.
“What I advise all parents and caregivers from A2ZGOV is that at the time of purchase opt for backpacks of light and sturdy material, with padded backs and two adjustable straps. After purchase, the attention of parents should be directed to the child. weight that the child carries in the backpack that ideally should not exceed ten percent of the child’s weight. For example, a 30-kilo child should not carry a backpack weighing more than three kilograms.”
According to the neurosurgeon,”the repeated transport of a heavy backpack may in the future cause serious problems for children’s backs. In addition to the back pain that children are likely to complain about in the day-to-day, this habit can lead to increased wear of the child’s spine over time, seriously damaging their health in the long run.”
After you hit with the weight of the backpack, comes the organization of the materials inside it. The doctor reveals that”placing heavier objects in the back of the backpack and correctly distributing materials in the case of backpacks with side compartments will help balance the weight carried and avoid overloading injuries on the back of the child.”
Back pain is the most common cause of physician visits. Diseases that affect the spine account for more than 50 percent of the causes of physical disability. It is estimated that 7 out of 10 Portuguese suffer or have suffered from back pain.
Three tips from the doctor Luís Teixeira
- Weigh your children’s backpacks before they leave home. If the load exceeds 15% of its own weight then it is necessary to remove load. This is a recommendation that must be strictly adhered to, managing the child’s schedule as closely as possible. For example, when not needed, books should stay in school, in lockers.
- Look for two-strap backpacks and a good holder, where the weight can be supported evenly. On the other hand, when it is impossible to circumvent the measure, the punctual option should be for a suitcase with wheels. Contrary to what is often thought, this is not a solution that solves the problem, but that just minimizes it. In everyday life the correct thing is always to control the load carried.
- Correct your children if the backpack is being carried with the loops too loose: when it is near the end of the back, the pressure on the spine is very high. All backpacks should have tight and tight handles so there is no weight swing.