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Chiropractic Alleviates Colic

Chiropractic Alleviates Colic
Campbell Chiropractic of Kanata has great news for parents of infants with colic: A major review study reveals that chiropractic care alleviates colic. What’s more, it is safer and more effective than medical interventions.

Major Review Study

Chiropractic care is beneficial for babies with colic, according to a systematic literature review published in Explore: The Journal of Science and Healing.
To collect studies on chiropractic care for infantile colic, researchers searched eight major medical research databases.
The study’s authors write: “Our systematic review of the literature revealed 26 articles meeting our inclusion criteria. These consisted of three clinical trials, two survey studies, six case reports, two case series, four cohort studies, five commentaries, and four reviews of the literature. Our findings reveal that chiro-practic care is a viable alternative to the care of infantile colic and congruent with evidence-based practice, particular-ly when one considers that medical care options are no better than placebo or have associated adverse events.” (Explore 2011;7:168-74.)

Chiropractic Evaluation
Colic is characterised by irritability, excessive crying, gas and difficulty sleeping. Colic is a diagnosis of exclusion that should only be made after a thorough evaluation to rule out other ailments. Dr. Campbell and Dr. McKeagan explains that this evaluation should include checking the infant for misalignment of spinal bones (vertebrae) — a condition that has been linked with colic.
Spinal misalignment in infants are sparked by the twists, turns and pressure placed on the head, neck and spine during the delivery process. In fact, an average of 40 to 70 pounds of force is exerted on a newborn’s head and neck during birth. This strains the spinal joints in the upper neck — called upper cervical joints — especially the joint between the baby’s head and neck. Caesarean sections and assisted deliveries may produce additional torque to the infant’s head and neck, possibly setting these babies up for even greater risk.
When spinal movement is restricted or vertebrae become misaligned, the result is a common condition known as vertebral subluxation. In addition to colic, vertebral subluxations are linked to ear infections, headaches and a number of other disorders. Dr. Campbell and Dr. McKeagan use safe and gentle maneuvers called chiropractic adjustments to restore alignment and movement to the spine.

Gentle Adjustments
Dr. Campbell and Dr. McKeagan employs specially tailored, extremely gentle adjusting techniques for children, which were developed by pediatric researchers. Extremely light pressure is applied during infant adjustments (J Manipulative Physiol Ther 2005;28:1-5).
The procedure generates a calming effect that can, in some cases, quiet colic in a single visit.
That’s exactly what happened to 80 of the 317 colicky infants involved in a study including 73 doctors of chiroprac-tic.
Within 14 days of chiropractic care (an average of three visits), 94 percent of the children — including the 80 whose colic was quelled on the first day — “showed a satisfactory response. After four weeks, the improvements were maintained.” (J Manipulative Physiol Ther 1989;12:281.)
Interestingly, 51 percent of these children had already undergone unsuccessful drug-therapy treatment. Chiropractic not only worked: It worked when drugs failed.

Better Than Drugs
“Medications available . . . have not been proved effective in the treatment of colic,” note researchers from the University of Louisville School of Medicine in Louisville, Kentucky (Am Fam Physician 2004;70:735-40).

Danish researchers, who spent two weeks observing a cohort of colicky babies, agree. Not only that, they found that spinal manipulation is more effective against infantile colic than drugs. As part of the study, half of the infants received spinal manipulation and half received the gas-relieving drug dimethicone.
Four to seven days into the experiment, the spinal manipulation group’s crying was reduced by 2.7 hours, com-pared with only one hour for those receiving dimethicone. “From trial day five onward the manipulation group did significantly better than the dimethicone group,” write the study’s authors (J Manipulative Physiol Ther 1999;22:517–22). Chiropractic care focuses on addressing the root cause of disease and illness — not covering up symptoms with drugs and exposing patients (particularly children) to potentially dangerous side effects.

Additional Colic Contributors
There are other factors, beyond vertebral subluxations, that may contribute to colic. Read on to learn about re-search into these additional factors.

Cow’s Milk
Proteins in cow’s milk “appear to be associated with the prevalence of infantile colic in a significant number of cases,” according to researchers from the University of Calgary, Alberta Children’s Hospital (J R Soc Health 2004;124:162-6).
Even though most colicky children outgrow this protein intolerance, doc-tors of chiropractic urge mothers to breastfeed infants whenever possible.
If breastfeeding is not possible, opt for formulas that exclude cow’s milk. Also, natural flow bottles are recommended. In one study of 36 colicky babies, some of the infants were fed with standard bottles and some with Dr. Brown’s Natural Flow Baby Bottles. Those sucking from placebo bottles spent “significantly more time crying and fussing on average than infants using Dr. Brown’s Natural Flow Baby Bottles. Because these bottles decreased the time the infants spent cry-ing and fussing, use of these bottles may be recommended for colicky infants who receive any bottle feedings.” (Gastroenterol Nurs 2006;29:226-31.)

Other Feeding Problems
Unfortunately, the ingestion of cow’s milk isn’t the only feeding problem associated with colic.
In one study, researchers divided 43 infants between the ages of 6 weeks and 8 weeks into two groups: colicky (19 infants) and noncolicky (24 in-fants).
Not surprisingly, infants in the colic group displayed more difficulties with feeding, sucking, more discomfort following feedings and lower responsiveness during feeding interactions. “Infants in the colic group also had more evidence of GOR [gastrooesophageal reflux] based on the number of reflux episodes on abdominal ultrasound as well as maternal report of reflux.” (Arch Dis Child 2004;89:908-12.)
Feeding posture may also play a role. Babies should be held in an upright posture during feeding, to prevent excessive intake of air, and burped following feeding.
In addition, research indicates that mothers nursing colicky infants should steer clear of caffeinated beverages, garlic, gas-producing vegetables, spicy foods and dairy products.

Smoke
Women who smoke are twice as likely to have babies with colic, compared with nonsmoking moms, researchers report (Arch Dis Child 2000;83:302-3).

Over-Stimulation
Over-stimulation may also trigger colic. Studies suggest that reducing activity and exposure to stimuli — such as music, television and light — especially prior to bedtime, can keep infants colic-free (BMJ 1998;316:1563-9).
On the other hand, calming activities, such as massaging your infant, may ward off colic by promoting quality sleep. For instance, one study that looked at 16 mothers and their babies indicates that infant massage enhances sleep quality by triggering natural sleep-wake cycles called circadian rhythms.
“The results of the present study show a clear, long-term effect of massage therapy on the development of circadian rhythm,” says study author Sari Goldstein Ferber, Ph.D. “Massage therapy by mothers . . . serves as a strong time cue, helping infants coordinate their developing circadian system with environmental cues,” Dr. Ferber notes. “The current findings highlight the importance of mother-infant interactions and environmental cues for the development of the infant.”

Complimentary Workshop – How To Stay Healthy This Winter

HOW TO STAY HEALTHY THIS WINTER – NATURALLY!

Presented by Dr. Matthew McKeaganChiropractor

TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 22   6:00 – 6:45 pm

Campbell Chiropractic of Kanata

2 Beaverbrook Rd., Suite 208

At This Workshop You Will Discover:

  • How to increase your energy & physical well-being
  • Build your natural immune system
  • The secret cause of illness & how to stay well naturally
  • How to avoid the common cold & flu
  • The best food & supplements for immunity building.

This workshop is designed for the community…to help educate and empower a healthy lifestyle. We encourage you to bring your family & friends.

This workshops is complimentary, however seating is limited

Please call (613) 592-8656 or e-mail our office info@campbellchiropractic.ca to reserve your seats today!

Get In The Game, Without The Pain!

One key to success on the golf course can’t be found at the pro shop. It’s the physical condition of the golfer. Pain shouldn’t be par for the course. Stay in the game by protecting your back.

When you consider the spinal rotation that goes into a golf swing and the fact that the speed of the club can reach 160 km/hour, it’s easy to understand that golf puts significant stress on your body.

Follow these tips to improve your game and prevent the pain.

1. Warm up and warm down

Take a few minutes to stretch before and after your game. Start with a brisk walk — 10 to 15 minutes should do it. Then do some light stretching.

2. Stay hydrated

Drink plenty of fluids before, during and after your game. Remember that once you are thirsty, you are already starting to dehydrate.

3. Push, don’t carry, your golf bag

Pushing or pulling your bag and taking turns riding in a cart can help you prevent back injury. If you prefer to carry your clubs, use a double-strap bag that evenly distributes the weight. If your bag gets too heavy, put it down and take a break.

4. Choose the right shoes

Wearing a golf shoe with good support and the proper fit can help prevent knee, hip and lower back pain.

5. Take lessons

The right swing technique can do more than improve your game. It can also spare you unnecessary pain. Working with a professional is a great way to learn the basics.

One key to success on the golf course can’t be found at the pro shop. It’s the physical condition of the golfer. Pain shouldn’t be par for the course. Stay in the game by protecting your back.

When you consider the spinal rotation that goes into a golf swing and the fact that the speed of the club can reach 160 km/hour, it’s easy to understand that golf puts significant stress on your body.

Follow these tips to improve your game and prevent the pain.

Compliments of Campbell Chiropractic of Kanata and the Ontario Chiropractic Association

We Have Moved To 2 Beaverbrook Rd. in the Beaverbrook Centre

It is with great excitement that we are pleased to announce that we have officially moved to our new location and are open for business!

Your new and much improved chiropractic office is located at the Beaverbrook Centre at 2 Beaverbrook Rd, Kanata at the corner of Teron Road.

Our office is located on the 2nd floor – Suite # 208.

The new location will offer a number of new benefits to you such as an abundance of parking spaces reserved just for YOU, an elevator with convenient accessibility for special needs, a pleasant reception area, a colorful children’s play area and a brand new, modern office.

Of course in the office you will see all the familiar faces you have come to depend on ready to pick up from where you left off.

With our deepest gratitude for your loyalty and patronage, we look forward to serving you at our new location.

If you have any questions, please contact our office.

 

 

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Back Pain May Be in Your Genes

Even if you have never had a backache, if your parent, grandparent, sibling or other family member struggles with chronic back pain, research shows that you are at heightened risk of developing similar symptoms. That’s why regular preventive chiropractic care with Dr. Campbell or Dr. McKeagan at Campbell Chiropractic of Kanata is especially crucial for anyone with a family history of back pain.

Researchers are uncovering more and more evidence that genetics play a role in musculoskeletal disorders in general, and back pain in particular. The more doctors of chiropractic understand about factors influencing the risk of back pain, the better they can help patients.

The Role of Genes

Intervertebral discs are flexible, pillow-like structures between bones of the spine (vertebrae) that protect the spine and absorb impact. Investigations into disc degeneration reveal that the association with family history is as high as 61 percent (Joint Bone Spine 2008;75:383-7). Another study revealed similar patterns of back pain symptoms among family members, even from an early age (Ann Rheum Dis 2010;69:2102-6).

There is often a connection between family patterns of back pain and family patterns of degenerative disease in the bones and joints — but not always. Here’s the surprising conclusion of one study published: While propensities for low-back pain and disc deterioration are both hereditary, they are in fact carried on different genes. Consequently, these genetic predispositions may occur in tandem or separately (Ann Rheum Dis 2010;69:2102-6).

Specific Genes Involved

In recent years, specific genes have been linked with back pain and degenerative diseases. Investigators compared the typical variations of a specific group of genes — or alleles — among a group of patients seeking treatment for lumbar disc disease. These particular alleles are associated with the make-up of cartilage, a flexible connective tissue found in joints throughout the body, including intervertebral discs. Particularly in patients under age 40, one allele predicted more severe disc degeneration than another (Int Orthop 2007;31:107-11).

Other research relates disc degeneration to an allele that affects how the cells of the body take up vitamin D(Ann Med 002;34:42-7). Other analyses identified genes that may play a role in triggering osteoarthritis (OA), a disease in which the cartilage in the joints wears away, causing pain and stiffness. The same collagen-related gene described above is also associated with OA in that it affects the ratio of amino acids found in collagen (J Rheumatol 2011;38:747-52). Other genes that control collagen volume and disease progression are also believed to contribute to OA (Med Clin North Am 2009;93:45-66).

A Proactive Approach

What can you do to protect your health if you have a family history of back pain or degenerative disease? While your genetic make-up cannot be altered, don’t throw in the towel yet. Just because an individual has a family history of back pain does not mean he or she is doomed to suffer as well. Many factors contribute to “switching on” a genetic trigger of disease. Chiropractic care keeps the spine in optimal alignment, offering significant prevention from back pain.

If you already live with back problems, chiropractic care can help ease or even completely relieve symptoms, even among individuals with a family history of the disorder. For instance, a review of eighteen research trials shows that chiropractic care effectively manages symptoms of disc degeneration, without the potential hazards of surgery or medication (Spine 2010;35:E488-504). Potential complications from surgery include adverse reaction to anesthesia and infection, while medications given for pain can cause gastrointestinal problems such as ulcers, liver damage, and a risk of dependence.

Chiropractic care protects patients’ spines by identifying vertebral subluxations. These are areas of dysfunction in the vertebrae — the small bones that fit together to form the spine, protecting the spinal cord and supporting the trunk. Vertebral subluxations are common problems in which the vertebrae are slightly out of alignment. People with a family history of back pain may be especially prone to developing this common disorder.

The doctor corrects vertebral subluxations with chiropractic adjustments. These gentle, focused maneuvers safely put the spine back into proper alignment, easing discomfort. The well-being of the spine is a central component of the chiropractic lifestyle, an approach to health that emphasizes prevention to support the body’s innate mechanisms. This unique approach is particularly helpful at warding off disease and injury. Other aspects of the chiropractic lifestyle include nutrition, exercise, stress management and ergonomics. Our office educates patients about all of these aspects of wellness. If you have a family history of back pain or joint disease, or simply want to be the healthiest you can be, call today to schedule a chiropractic evaluation.

Our Christmas Boy

As an only child, Christmas was a quiet affair when I was growing up. I vowed that someday I’d marry and have six children, and at Christmas my house would vibrate with energy and love. I found the man who shared my dream, but we had not reckoned on the possibility of infertility. Undaunted, we applied for adoption and, within a year, he arrived.

We called him our Christmas boy because he came to us during the season of joy, when he was just six days old. Then nature surprised us again, in rapid succession, we added two biological children to the family-not as many we had hoped for, but compared with my quiet childhood, three made an entire satisfactory crowd.

As our Christmas boy grew, he made it clear that only he had the experience to select and decorate the Christmas tree each year. He rushed the season, starting his gift list before we’d even finished the Thanksgiving turkey. He pressed us into singing carols, our frog-like voices contrasting with his musical gift of perfect pitch. Each holiday he stirred us up, leading us through a round of merry chaos.

Our friends were right about adopted children not being the same. Through his own unique heredity, our Christmas boy brought color into our lives with his irrepressible good cheer, his bossy wit. He made us look and behave better than we were.

Then, on his twenty-six Christmas, he left us as unexpected as he had come. He was killed in a car accident. On an icy Denver street, on his way home to visit his young wife and infant daughter, but first stopped by the family home to decorate our tree, a ritual he had never abandoned.

Grief stricken, his father and I sold our home, where memories clung to every room. We moved to California, leaving behind our friends and church. In the seventeen years that followed his death, his widow remarried; his daughter graduated from high school. His father and I grew old enough for us to retire, and in December 1986, we decided to return to Denver.

We slid into the city on the tall of the blizzard, through streets a blaze with lights. Looking away from the glow, I fixed my gaze on the distant Rockies, where our adopted son loved to go in search of the perfect tree. Now in the foothills where was his grave- a grave I could not bare to visit.

We settled into a small, boxy house, so different from the family home where we had orchestrated our lives. It was quiet, like the house of my childhood. Our other son had married and begun his own Christmas traditions in another state. Our daughter, an artist, seemed fulfilled by her career.

While I stood standing toward the snow-capped mountains on day, I heard a car pull up, then the impatient peal of the doorbell. There stood our granddaughter, and in her gray-green eyes and impudent grin, I saw the reflection of our Christmas boy.

Behind her, lugging a large pine tree came her mother, stepfather and ten year-old half-brother. They swept past us in a flurry of laughter; they uncorked wine toasting our homecoming. They decorated the tree and piled gaily-wrapped packages under the boughs.

“You’ll recognize the ornaments,” said my former daughter-in-law. “They were his. I saved them for you.” When I murmured, in remember pain that we hadn’t had a tree for seventeen years, our cheeky granddaughter said, “Then it’s time to shape up!”

They left in a whirl, shoving one another out the door, but not before asking us to join them the next morning for church and for dinner at their home. “Oh,” I began, “We just can’t.” “You sure as heck can,” ordered our granddaughter, as bossy as her father had been. “I’m singing the solo and I want to see you there!” We had long ago given up the poignant Christmas services, but now, under pressure, we sat rigid in the front pew, fighting back the tears.

Then it was solo time. Our granddaughter’s magnificent soprano voice soared, dear and true, in perfect pitch. She sang “O Holy Night”, which brought back bittersweet memories. In a rare emotional response, the congregation applauded in delight. How her father would have relished that moment. We had alerted that there would be a “whole mess of people” for dinner-but thirty-five assorted relatives filled every corner of the house; small children, noisy and exuberant, seemed to bounce off the walls. I could not sort out who belonged to whom, but it didn’t matter. They all belonged to one another. They took us in, enfolded us in joyous camaraderie.

We sang carols in loud, off-key voices, saved only by that amazing soprano. Sometime after dinner, before winter sunset, it occurred to me that a true family is not always one’s own flesh and blood. It is a climate of the heart. Had it not been for our adopted son, we would not now be surrounded by caring strangers who would help us to hear the music again.

Later, our granddaughter asked us to come along with her. “I’ll drive,” she said. “There’s a place I like to go.” She jumped behind the wheel of the car and, with confidence of a newly licensed driver, zoomed off toward the foothills. Alongside the headstone rested a small, heart-shaped rock, slightly cracked, and painted by our daughter. On its weathered surface she had written, “To my brother, with love.” Across the crest of the grave lay a holly-bright Christmas wreath. Our number-two son, we learned, sent on every year.

As we stood by the headstone in the chilly but somehow comforting silence, we were not prepared for unpredictable granddaughter’s next move. Once more that day her voice, so like her father’s, lifted in song and the mountainside echoed the chorus of “Joy to the World”, on and on into infinity.

When the last pure note had faded, I felt, for the first time since our son’s death, a sense of peace, of the positive continuity of life, or renewed faith and hope. The real meaning of Christmas had been restored to us. Hallelujah!

 

-Shirley Barksdale

Hydration

One of the biggest secrets to attaining and maintaining better health is the value of water and drinking enough of it each day. Most people take it for granted, and don’t realize the importance it has on your health and your survival. It is a fact that we could live without food for approximately a month, but only a week without water! Consider some of these facts:

  • The human body is composed of 66% water.
  • Blood is 83% water.
  • Muscles are 75% water.
  • The brain is 85% water.
  • Lungs are 90% water.
  • Bone is 22% water.

Recent studies have shown that a mere 20% decrease in body water can cause problems with short term memory, trouble with basic math problems, and difficulty with focusing on the computer. These studies further extrapolate that mild dehydration is one of the most common causes of daytime fatigue. It is estimated that 75% of North Americans are suffering from chronic dehydration.

Proper hydration to the body will allow you to  eliminate toxins quickly and efficiently. Optimal water consumption can also help you to reduce high blood pressure by maintaining the proper amount of blood volume in your circulatory system. Water is the main catalyst in the digestion of food, nutrient absorption and the elimination of solid food waste. Furthermore, joint movement is greatly facilitated by water. The cartilages lining your joints need fluid to create a cushion between your bones. Insufficient water can cause a reactionary, inflammatory process by your body to compensate for the lack of fluid lubrication. It may appear as an infection or as a form of arthritis, when in reality it is only dehydration (this certainly applies to your spinal joints and to your intervertebral discs).

Your body’s most important nutrient for homeostatic temperature control is an adequate amount of internal body water.

Athletes or even non-athletes exercising in a hot environment can lose 22 ounces of water through respiration and perspiration every 20 minutes. Conversely the body is only able to convert 6 ounces every 20 minutes which results in 16 ounces lost every 20 minutes. A 3% loss of body weight can result in performance losses from 20-30%. To combat this, pre-event hydration is essential.

Ten Benefits of Drinking Water:

Don’t medicate, hydrate!

1.    Increases energy and relieves fatigue. Since your brain is mostly water, drinking helps you think, focus and concentrate better to be more alert. As an added bonus, your energy levels are also boosted!

2.    Promotes weight loss. Removes by products of fat, reduces eating intake by filling up your tummy if consumed prior to meals, reduces hunger (a natural appetite suppressant), raises your metabolism and has zero calories!

3.    Flushes out toxins. Water gets rid of waste through sweat and urination which reduces the risk of kidney stones and urinary tract infections.

4.    Improves skin complexion. Moisturizes your skin, keeps it fresh, soft, and smooth. Gets rid of wrinkles. It’s the best anti-aging treatment around!

5.    Maintains regularity. Water aids in digestion as it is the essential ingredient to digest your food and prevent constipation.

6.    Boosts your immune system. A water guzzler is less likely to get sick. Who wouldn’t rather feel healthy the majority of the time? Drinking plenty of water helps fight against the flu, cancer and other ailments.

7.    Natural headache remedy. Helps relieve and prevent headaches (migraines and tension headaches) which are commonly triggered by dehydration.

8.    Prevents cramps and sprains. Proper hydration helps keep your joints lubricated and muscles more elastic so joint pain is less likely.

9.    Puts you in a good mood. When your body is functioning at best you feel great and are happy.

10.  Saves you money. Water is free! Even when you choose bottled or filtered it is still cheaper than the high sugar, high fat filled latte!

Current guidelines state that it’s recommended that women consume a total of 2.7 liters of water per day from all food and beverages combined. For men, 3.7 liters is the recommended amount. Depending on your diet, approximately 20% of water that you consume comes from your food and 80% from what you drink. Liquids that can be consumed include caffeinated beverages including soda, coffee and tea. Our kidneys work to perfectly balance our water requirements so that we take in and retain as much fluid as we need. Healthy people can let thirst be their guide to their fluid requirements. Alcoholic beverages do not count as they affect the interconnect between the pituitary gland and your kidney, causing your body to excrete more water.

Dr. Sheldon Campbell B.Sc., D.C.

Kanata Massage Therapy

Massage Therapy is the assessment and treatment of soft tissue injuries and conditions. Massage Therapy will increase circulation, increase range of motion, decrease pain, inflammation and decrease tension in hypertonic muscles. Massage Therapy can treat a wide range of soft tissue conditions.

Click here to find out all you need to know about our Massage Therapy Services,  including answers to Frequently Asked Questions.

Back Pack and Postural Strains

There is much concern today about our children being exposed to high amounts of postural strains. I see children in and out of my office everyday complaining of neck and back pain. Many parents are more concerned about rounded shoulders or uneven shoulders and uneven hips. I believe that today’s child is being exposed to postural strains that rival that of a middle age executive. That is not very good! It’s my belief if something is not done to prevent these postural strains, that these children will grow up with more serious posture related back and neck problems than ever seen before.

Our children sit at desks at school, 5 days a week. In chairs that are not ergonomically designed for them specifically. They carry back packs filled with books and laptops that are very heavy.

Buses are being cut from budgets, which forces some children to have to walk longer distances with heavy packs on their backs and strapped to their shoulders. Furthermore, these children will spend hours at home on a couch slouched with a remote control device in their hands and surfing the net, sitting on chairs and in front of computers that are ergonomically designed for their parents and not for them. The fact of the matter is, daily postural stresses to a child’s spine from improper use from a back pack, poorly designed computer stations and video games will cause biomechanical and structural changes to the spine as well as its supporting structures. These changes can not only cause pain but more importantly, have an effect on the child’s growth into adulthood. There is an old saying in chiropractic that says; “As the twig is bent so grows the tree”. I take this very seriously.

In this article I’m going to concentrate on the stresses that are brought on by the improper use of back packs. The stresses associated with video games and improper computer stations we will discuss at a later date.

Recent studies in the US show that 50% of Orthopedists polled reported treating children with back and shoulder pain attributed to carrying back packs. More than 3300 children from the ages of 5-14 were treated in emergency rooms in the US for related back pack issues. These numbers do not include students who went to see their Chiropractors or their family physicians. Auburn University study reported that a heavy back pack might be a threat to spinal development. In their sample survey, the average back pack was 17% of the child’s weight. 76% of the children study suffered muscle soreness. 50.8% suffered back pain, and 24% suffered numbness.

The Ontario Chiropractic Association started a campaign called Pack it Light, Wear it Right. It is a campaign geared to educate the public and students on the dangers of improper use of a back pack and how things can be avoided. Recently a spokesperson for the Ontario Chiropractic Association has said “In carrying a poorly designed or over loaded back pack will place excessive weight on a child’s growing spinal column. This kind of daily stress and strain will lead to serious back pain, changes in posture and gait and potential irritation and injury of spinal joints, muscles and nerves.”

What Can Be Done?

One of the easiest ways to reduce repetitive postural stresses in children associated with using a back pack is to make sure they understand the proper way to carry, pack and lift a back pack.

Back Pack Safety Essentials

  • Back pack safety essentialsA backpack should never weigh more than 10% of a child’s body weight. 15% if you are 15 years of age or older.
  • Your back pack should have wide padded shoulder straps and a waist belt and a chest belt to help distribute the weight evenly.
  • Back pack should be positioned so that it hangs below the shoulders at the top and 1-2 inches above the waist at the bottom.
  • Your back pack should not hang half-way down your bum!
  • Use both shoulder straps; never carry a back pack over 1 shoulder.
  • The back pack should have several compartments to distribute the load.
  • Pack heavier items closer to your back and pointed items should never rest on your back.
  • Bend your knees when lifting the back and avoid flinging it onto over your shoulder and onto your back.

These are all good preventative measures for you and your children but remember this; the most important thing you can do is to continue to listen to your children. When they tell you that their backs or their necks hurt it is for a reason, and it is as a result of something. Postural stress and biomechanical changes cause a tremendous amount of pain and can lead to future long term problems. Consult your Chiropractor if you are concerned about your child’s posture and/or their back pack. If you would like more information on back pack safety and your child’s posture or should you have questions about chiropractic for children, computer ergonomics, back pack ergonomics or any other health related issues feel free to contact Dr. Campbell or Dr. Mckeagan.

Dr. Sheldon Campbell B.Sc., D.C.