WORDS HANNHA MAY-LEE WONG
During the pandemic, children are increasingly spending time hunched over their electronic devices. Matt Kan warns that long hours of sitting, poor posture and slouching when using electronic devices can negatively affect a child’s spine health in the long run.
According to Mr Kan, children between 8 and 15 years old go through growth spurts and bone development. During this time, sitting on chairs for too long, coupled to a lack of exercise, can increase the risk of developing spine issues amongst children of this age group. One example of such issues is postural kyphosis—an excessive curve of the spine, also called hunch back or rounded back. It is commonly caused by bad posture or prolonged slouching.
What can parents do?
There are a couple of things parents can do to help their children build healthy posture habits and reduce the risks of musculoskeletal issues in the future.
Taking breaks to walk around the house, especially after a study or gaming session, can improve musculoskeletal health. Stretching and simple exercises can also help strengthen and increase blood supply to the muscles.
Parents should keep a close eye on their children’s back posture, especially when their children are studying on their laptops or gaming on their mobile phones. If they are slouching, parents should give gentle reminders to correct their children’s posture.
Matt Kan is the founder of and senior consultant of chiropractic at Chiropractic First.