ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Obesity May Raise Kids' Allergy Risk
Air Quality Better in Northeast, Midwest
Overweight Moms More Likely to Have Asthmatic Kids
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Music Therapy For Prehistoric Man?
Should Your Child Be Seeing a Chiropractor?
Needling Away Your Headaches With Acupuncture
ANIMAL CARE
Animals Respond to Acupuncture's Healing Touch
Rest Easy. When It Comes to Swine Flu, Your Pet Is Safe
Safe Toys for Dogs
BONES & JOINTS
Breast-feeding Might Shield Women From Rheumatoid Arthritis
Tai Chi May Help Ease Fibromyalgia
Tips to Ease an Aching Back
CANCER
Gene Studies Reveal Cancer's Secrets
Quitting Smoking Doubles Survival in Early Stage Lung Cancer
More Americans Urged to Get Cancer Screenings
CAREGIVING
Organ Donation Policies Vary Among Children's Hospitals
TV Watching Doesn't Fast-Track Baby's Skills
Child's Food Allergies Take Toll on Family Plans
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Review Confirms Links Between Diet, Heart Health
Bye, Bye Back Fat?
Secondhand Smoke Quickly Affects Blood Vessels
COSMETIC
Science May Banish Bad Hair Days
Study Evaluates Laser Therapies for Hair Removal
Get Sugared!.... Its a sweet choice for hair removal
DENTAL, ORAL
Dental Implants Need More Work Than Root Canals
Scientists Find Gene for Tooth Enamel
Amino Acid May Be Key to Strong Teeth
DIABETES
Findings Challenge Tight Glucose Control for Critically Ill Patients
Formula Puts Doctor, Patient Glucose Readings on Same Page
Drug May Not Help Diabetes-Related Eye Damage
DIET, NUTRITION
The High-Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) Debate
Eat Light - Live Longer
Polyunsaturated Fats Really May Lower Heart Risk
DISABILITIES
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Air Quality Better in Northeast, Midwest
Ozone-Depleting Inhalers Being Phased Out
Global Warming May Bring More Respiratory Woes
EYE CARE, VISION
Certain Diabetes Drugs May Pose Eye Risk
Guard Kids' Eyes Against Long-Term Sun Damage
Drinking Green Tea May Protect Eyes
FITNESS
As Temperature Plummets, It's Still Safe to Exercise
MRSA Infections Can Bug Fitness Buffs
Vigorous Exercise Can Cut Breast Cancer Risk
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
New Yogurt May Ease Stomach Ulcers
Bowel Prep Harder on Women Than Men
New Guidelines Issued for Management of IBS
GENERAL HEALTH
Be Healthy, Spend Less
Keep Safety in Mind While Your Kids Are Cooling Off in the Water
Food and Water Supply Poisoned by Perchlorate
HEAD & NECK
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
Save Your Aging Brain, Try Surfing The Web
E-Mailing Your Way to Healthier Habits
Subway Defibrillators Save Lives
HEARING
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Rheumatoid Arthritis a Threat to the Heart
Laughter Can Boost Heart Health
Quitting Smoking Doubles Survival in Early Stage Lung Cancer
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Chinese 'Devil Dung' Plant Could Be a Swine Flu Fighter
Older Adults May Have Some Immunity to Swine Flu
Grapefruit Compound Inhibits Hepatitis C Virus
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Coconut Oil May Help Fight Childhood Pneumonia
Babies Cared For In Others Homes Might Become Heavy Toddlers
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
MEN'S HEALTH
Low Vitamin D Levels May Boost Men's Heart Attack Risk
Low Iron Levels Cut Cancer Risk in Men With PAD
Strenuous Daily Workout May Keep Cancer at Bay
MENTAL HEALTH
Mind Exercise Might Help Stroke Patients
Living Alone Increases Odds of Developing Dementia
Green Spaces Boost the Body and the Mind
PAIN
Alleviating Rheumatoid Arthritis
Tai Chi May Help Ease Fibromyalgia
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Calcium Supplements Cut Blood Lead Levels During Pregnancy
Music of Mozart Soothes the Preemie Baby
For Baby and Mom Alike, Breast-Feeding May Be Best
SENIORS
Nighttime Urination Linked to Higher Death Rate Among Elderly
Save Your Aging Brain, Try Surfing The Web
Tai Chi May Help Ward Off Knee Pain in Seniors
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Meditation May Help Put Primary Insomnia to Bed
Moderate Aerobics May Ease Insomnia Symptoms
Pay Attention to Signs That Say You're Too Fatigued to Drive
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Postmenopausal Women With Breast Cancer Face Joint Issues
Sleeping Could Help Women Lose The Baby Fat
Spice Compounds May Stem Tumor Growth
Add your Article

Backpack Safety Should Be on Back-to-School Lists

(HealthDay News) -- The start of a new school year means it's time to remind students and parents about proper selection and use of backpacks.

"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," Eric Wall, director of the orthopedic surgery division at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, said in a center news release.

However, improper use of backpacks can cause injuries that require medical treatment. For example, backpack-related injuries send almost 6,000 students to emergency departments each year, according to a U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission report released in 2002.

Wall and his colleagues in the division of orthopedic surgery offer guidelines to prevent school backpack-related injuries:

* When shopping for a backpack, select one that's lightweight, has two wide and padded shoulder straps, a cushioned back, and waist straps. A pack with wheels may be a good option if your child has to lug a very heavy load.
* Children should always use both shoulder straps, and the straps should be cinched tight.
* Limit backpack loads to no more than 15 percent to 20 percent of a child's body weight.
* The heaviest items should be packed closest to the center of a child's back.
* Children shouldn't carry all of their books throughout the school day. They should keep their books in their locker and get them when they need them.
* When wearing or lifting a heavy backpack, children should bend using both knees.
* Don't leave backpacks on the floor where people can trip on them, and don't swing a pack around where it can hit other people.
* If your child uses a backpack and complains of persistent back pain, consult with a pediatrician.

More information

The Nemours Foundation has more about backpack safety.



-- Robert Preidt



SOURCE: Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, news release, Aug. 6, 2008

Last Updated: Aug. 17, 2008

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