Three Tips for a Healthy Start to the New School Year

It’s almost back-to-school time, and our chiropractors want to make sure that every student and parent starts the new school year off with good health. Follow these tips to improve your overall wellness and stay healthy this school year!

1. Use your backpack correctly.

We often field questions from concerned parents about backpack weights. Your child’s backpack should not weigh more than 10 to 20% of his or her body weight. If it does, talk to your child and the school about alternatives, like making sure kids have enough time between classes to visit their lockers to reduce backpack weight.

Although kids seem to think slinging their backpacks over one shoulder is cool, it can be detrimental for spine health and cause misalignment and back pain. Talk to your child about using both straps, and make sure they fit comfortably over both shoulders. Adjust the straps so the book bag doesn’t fall below their belt line.

If your child needs to wear a backpack for long periods of time, consider investing in one with a third strap that sits below the sternum. These types of backpacks can take pressure off your child’s shoulders and more evenly distribute stress. Backpacks with wider shoulders or memory foam may also be helpful.

2. Fight germs.

School exposes children to new ideas and lessons, but it also exposes them too germs. Consider making an appointment with one of our chiropractors in Vancouver WA for your child for an adjustment. The nervous system controls the immune system, and when we do adjustments, we help your brain properly communicate with the immune system. This can help your student fight off germs.

Talk to your child about proper hand washing too. This is one of the best defenses against getting sick. Slip a small container of anti-bacterial hand sanitizer in their backpacks for when soap and water aren’t readily available.

3. Sit up straight.

Good posture is a key to good spine health! Talk to your students about sitting up straight during long days of classes. Their feet should be flat on the floor with the shoulders back.

Posture is important when reading books, or as is more frequent these days, looking over a tablet or iPad. The tablet or textbook should tilt on a stand toward the student so the head doesn’t tilt over the shoulders when reading.

If your child is developing back, neck or shoulder pain due to backpacks or poor posture in the classroom, contact us today to schedule an appointment!

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