50 per cent rise in pediatric orthopaedic cases, wrong postures during online classes to blame, say doctors

Parents should never ignore such back and neck issues in their kids and should visit an orthopaedic if there is any such complaint.
For representational purposes
For representational purposes

NEW DELHI: A 50 per cent rise in pediatric orthopaedic cases with complaints of excruciating pain in the neck and back have been noted in hospital OPDs with doctors attributing it primarily to wrong postures during online classes.

The rise in multiple skeletal issues among children can be attributed to incorrect posture. This, in turn, can be blamed on increased screen exposure following school closure due to Covid which made the children physically and mentally unwell, experts said.

Dr Shubhang Aggarwal, Orthopaedic and Robotic Joint Replacement Surgeon and Director at NHS Hospital in Jalandhar said, "Wrong sitting postures coupled with almost no physical activity are to be blamed."

"Pediatric orthopaedic cases increased by 50 per cent. Most of them are overweight, have stamina and suffer from anxiety and attention deficit disorder," Dr Aggarwal said.

According to Dr Surbhit Rastogi, Paediatric Orthopaedic Consultant, Indian Spinal Injuries Centre, Vasant Kunj, a lot of children have been experiencing cervical neck and back stiffness observed mainly among the working adult population.

This is mainly attributed to children being confined to their homes and not getting exposed to sunlight, the doctor said.

"It's essential to observe some precautionary measures such as having calcium-rich diet, sunlight exposure, taking small breaks every half an hour, doing some stretching exercises, switching to ergonomic chairs with proper back support and adding some indoor and outdoor physical activities in the daily routine of kids," Dr Rastogi said.

Even teachers should ensure that during online classes they dedicate five minutes for some fun stretching activities, he said. Ideally, one should stand upright for one minute after sitting for 10 minutes at a stretch.

This helps to strengthen your back by ensuring proper blood circulation and maintaining muscle tone, the doctor said.

Parents should never ignore such back and neck issues in their kids and should visit an orthopaedic if there is any such complaint.

"Parents should be concerned when their kids complain of pain in neck and back, even if an initial x-ray exam doesn't reveal a problem.

"When children complain of back pain, about a third of the time there's a serious reason, whether due to an injury, infection or a tumour. They should be immediately rushed to the hospital," added Dr Vishal Gupta, Orthopedic Surgeon, Ujala Cygnus Rainbow Hospital, Agra.

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