Get Off The Computer!
Kids are spending more time now than ever before sitting in front of computer screens as they work on homework, check social media, surf the internet and watch videos on YouTube. However, all that computer usage is taking a toll on teens’ spines, as recent studies show that children and teenagers who spend too much time sitting are at increased risk of developing neck and back pain. What’s more, studies suggest that children who experience back pain often develop chronic problems.
Fortunately, the same studies suggest that teens can avoid back pain and the long-term health problems that accompany it with proper posture and ergonomics.
It’s no secret that increased time at the computer is known to lead to a number of musculoskeletal symptoms including headaches, neck pain, and shoulder dysfunction. Though there’s more research that must be done to confirm the effectiveness of ergonomic training or the use of computer peripherals – such a detached keyboards or laptop risers – on reducing musculoskeletal complaints, proper ergonomics has been suggested as a way to reduce these problems.
What The Evidence Says
Ongoing research has been investigating the impact of ergonomics training and the use of peripheral laptop accessories on the musculoskeletal complaints of children who use a laptop on a daily basis.
The long-term study began in 2009 with 34 seventh-grade students who consented to participation for six years, through the 12th grade. The research participants received professional ergonomic education along with web-based ergonomics resources. They were also given an external keyboard and mouse and a laptop riser to assist them in properly positioning their computer during usage.
Preliminary results show promise. Over the study’s first three years, those students who used an external keyboard on a daily basis reported a reduction in neck and shoulder pain and those who used an external mouse experienced fewer headaches. In contrast, the group who did not use any external accessories with their laptop reported an increase in back pain.
The research team suggests that ergonomic education could have significant health benefits for children and teens who use technology on a daily basis.
Earlier research has also shown that learning proper posture, along with chiropractic care, can prevent back pain in children.
The Ascent Chiropractic Advantage
Are you or your children dealing with the effects of too much time spent on the internet? At Ascent Chiropractic, we utilize a low-force, non-invasive, conservative approach to back and neck issues for our patients in Brookfield, Milwaukee, Wauwatosa, Waukesha, New Berlin & surrounding areas. To make an appointment at Ascent Chiropractic, call 262-345-4166 or schedule an appointment with our online scheduling app.