by Justin Phillips, D.C.
It’s that time of year again when we all begin preparing differently for the return of the school season. For the children and young adults that will be GOING to school in the next few weeks, remember that it inherently brings on new stressors to the body and we have to be more aware of our daily habits and routines. School brings up different issues that some may not think about and I would like to address these along with some tips to help.
School-goers will start filling bags with heavy books and carrying them around all day. Try to pull the shoulder straps tight so your bag is lifted higher and if your bag is equipped with a waist strap, use it.
Studying and reading causes your neck be pulled forward, thus losing its curve. This causes increased stress on the upper back muscles and possibly leading to headaches. Remember to take hourly breaks stretching the neck and shoulders for just 30 seconds.
Waking up earlier can cause you to lose out on valuable sleep, which is when the body is recovering from the day. Get in bed at a reasonable hour and try to not set your alarm late enough so you don’t hit “Snooze” multiple times. A long, uninterrupted sleep is the goal.
- Eating Healthy
Some schools have healthy food options, but definitely not all of them. Since you are not eating at home during lunch now, remember you have to make a special effort to pack or prepare healthier lunches to keep your body and mind sharp throughout the day.
- Desk Computers
Computers are used much more in daily school activities now. Make sure that you have correct posture when on a desktop computer. This involves lifting the monitor and remember this motto: “Ears over Shoulders over Hips”. If you do this, you will be in a healthy posture and prevent back aches.
Remember, when school begins and our schedules change, we must make an extra effort to maintain our health. If you are aware of these changes and take the necessary steps to overcome them, the changing schedule will not change your health.