Ninety-two percent of Australian children aged 5-14 use information and communication technologies, including computers. With increased use of electronic screen-based activities correlated with increasing age.
As a result of this increased usage, physios are treating more young patients suffering from unhealthy computing behaviours. These can include frequent and long durations of exposure; awkward postures due to inappropriate furniture and workstation layout, and ignoring computer-related discomfort. Many children are already suffering from repetitive motion injuries such as carpal tunnel syndrome and chronic pain in the hands, back, neck and shoulders.
Emphasis needs to be placed on teaching children how to properly use computer workstations. Poor work habits and computer workstations that don’t fit a child’s body during the developing years can have harmful physical effects that can last a lifetime. Parents need to be just as concerned about their children’s interaction with their computer workstations as they are with any activities that may affect their children’s long-term health.
To reduce the possibility of your child suffering painful and possibly disabling injuries, Physiotherapists suggest the following tips:
Additionally, postural abnormalities in adolescent years have been recognised as one of the sources of pain syndromes and early arthritis in adulthood. Therefore, posture should be checked and corrected in children before more serious problems can occur.