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Can you believe it’s already back to school season? Heading back to school can be an exciting time full of new classes, friends, and extracurricular activities. However, it’s crucial to make sure that you’re taking care of your body, especially your bones and joints! Here are some practical tips to help keep your musculoskeletal system in top shape during the school year.

Backpacks can get pretty heavy, but it’s important to make sure yours is the right size and adjusted properly to distribute the weight evenly across your back. If possible, try to find one with padded straps and a waist belt to reduce strain on your shoulders and back. And don’t forget to pack only what you need to avoid carrying unnecessary weight.

Whether you’re sitting in class, at the library, or working on assignments at home, it’s important to sit up straight with your shoulders relaxed and your feet flat on the floor. If you can, try to use an ergonomic chair and a height-adjustable desk to support a healthy posture while studying.

Exercise and Stretching

Regular physical activity is super important for your overall health and well-being. So, find some activities you enjoy like sports, dancing, or yoga. Not only will this help strengthen your muscles, but it also helps maintain bone density and joint flexibility. Just remember to warm up before and cool down after to prevent injuries!

Technology Use
Chances are you’ll be spending a fair amount of time on your smartphone, tablet, or computer. To prevent tech-related orthopedic issues, try practicing the 20-20-20 rule: Every 20 minutes, take a 20-second break, and focus on something 20 feet away. And pay attention to your hand and wrist positioning while typing or using handheld devices to reduce the risk of repetitive strain injuries.

Hydration and Nutrition
A well-balanced diet and proper hydration are essential for promoting bone and joint health. So, make sure to include foods that are rich in calcium and vitamin D like dairy products, leafy greens, fatty fish, and fortified cereals. And don’t forget to drink plenty of water to keep your joints flexible and spinal discs cushioned.

Aches and Pains
If you ever experience any aches or pains during the school day, take short breaks to stretch and move around. And don’t hesitate to reach out to a healthcare professional, like a school nurse or orthopedic specialist, if you notice persistent pain.

Remember, taking care of your body is crucial for academic success and enjoying all the fun that school has to offer. By following these practical tips, you can help keep your musculoskeletal system in top shape during the school year.

In the unfortunate event that you become injured, it’s equally important to receive treatment as soon as possible. Consider visiting one of our Urgent Injury Clinics in West Des Moines or Ankeny to get seen as quickly, or request an appointment with one of our specialists here. No matter the case, we are dedicated to providing the best possible care for our patients and want to help you get back to living!

*Disclaimer: The content of this blog is for informational purposes only. Please consult your healthcare professional for any medical questions. While we make every effort to ensure the information we share is accurate, we welcome comments, suggestions, or corrections of errors. This blog should not be used in any legal capacity whatsoever, including but not limited to establishing a “standard of care” in legal sense or basis for expert witness testimony. No guarantee is given regarding the accuracy of any statements or opinions made on this blog or website. In no way does listening, reading, emailing, or interacting on social media with our content establish a doctor-patient relationship. This blog is not medical advice. If necessary, please seek treatment immediately*

Jenna Valenti

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