Are your kids practising these healthy habits in school?
Come the end of January, many of our young patients or children of our patients will pack their books, polish their shoes and head back to school, ready for the year ahead. However, kids don't often think about the impact that common classroom activities like sitting in a classroom, carrying a heavy bag and excessive screen time can have on their overall health and wellbeing.
As part of the Australian Chiropractors Association's Back to School campaign, we here at Eir Family Chiropractic and Wellness are encouraging Aussie kids to adopt positive spinal health habits.
The importance of a quality backpack and how to carry it
- Kids need to carry their backpacks in a spine safe way by packing the heavier items to the back of the bag, carrying the backpack with two straps, adjusting it to the correct height and securing the waist strap. Backpacks get heavy so make sure only the essentials are packed.
- Shopping for a new backpack? The Chiropak, developed by the Australian Chiropractors Association, Macquarie University and Spartan School Supplies has our tick of approval.
- Book an appointment with Dr Miriam for advice on selecting the right backpack for your child.
- Dr Miriam is also offering free backpack fittings in February (Chiropak or your own).
Straighten Up App
The importance of posture
- Australian school kids can spend up to eight hours per day in school, and most of this time is spent sitting at a desk. To maintain good posture, kids should sit with their shoulders back and relaxed with both feet firmly on the floor.
- At Eir Family Chiropractic and Wellness we are seeing forward head carriage, scoliosis and slouched postures in kids, which may lead to musculoskeletal problems and pain later in life. Correcting poor posture and teaching them healthy spinal habits at a young age is key.
- Dr Miriam is providing free posture checks for all kinder and school kids in the month of February.
- If your child's posture is of concern then give us a call on 9327 9347 or book online
- Download The Straighten Up app for free. This app is designed to help everyday Australians maintain and improve spinal health. Use the app to set yourself reminders and receive notifications about sitting right, stretching, improving posture and even staying hydrated.
- See how spines are affected by backpacks with an augmented reality experience available at our practice. Download the Straighten Up App, scan the card and watch the character come to life.
Limit screen time
- We all know learning these days means more screen time, so try to reduce your child's recreational screen time to one hour a day. This includes tv, computer, laptop, ipad, tablet, smart phone and gaming consoles.
- Use a blue light filter on your screens when possible, especially after 6pm. This will decrease the amount of blue light displayed on the screen of the device. Blue light can suppress the production of melatoning (sleep-inducing hormone), so filtering it out can help you and your child sleep better. It will also reduce digital eye strain, so your eyes won't feel so tired by the end of the day.
- To keep kids active in the playground and alert in the classroom it's important that they eat a healthy, balanced diet.
- At Eir Family Chiropractic and Wellness we see the fallacy of the SAD standard Australian diet. Kids are not getting the nourishment their developing brains and bodies need. Instead we recommend:
- Non-processed, real foods in their natural state
- A colourful diet full of vegetables and fruit
- Reduce inflammatory foods such as sugar, wheat and dairy
- At least 2 Liters of water per day
- For further advice and/or laboratory testing (food intolerances, nutritional deficiencies, toxicity etc), book an appointment with our brilliant nutritionist Renée Beiermann Book Online
Pillows for kids
The importance of staying active and sleeping well
- Getting enough physical activity is key for a child's wellbeing, so as a guide, kids should try to get at least 60 minutes of physical activity daily.
- Dr Miriam's kids love playing outside in the backyard, kicking the ball around, sliding on the slip-n-slide, jumping on the trampoline, digging in the garden bed, taking the dog for a walk, and going on treasure hunts for sea shells, crabs and painted rocks. When indoors they love to draw, play board games, build lego and play with their toys.
- Sleep is vital and kids need between 8 and 12 hours of sleep per night. Way too many kids are given hand-me-down pillows from other family members that do not support their growing spines. At Eir Family Chiropractic and Wellness we highly recommend Ollie Owl pillows. Book an appointment with Dr Miriam for advice on selecting the right pillow for your child.
- Dr Miriam offers free pillow fittings for everyone all year round.
Australian Chiropractors Association’s Back to School campaign
Let's help kids practice these positive spinal health habits this back to school season and all year round.
We welcome you to make an appointment in February for more advice and assistance on implementing these positive health habits into your child's daily activity.
For more information on these tips and the Back to School campaign, visit www.backtoschool.org.au
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