Handbags that are too heavy pose significant health risks, and the Foundation for Chiropractic Progress recommends that you lighten your carrying load.
Increasingly, women are toting around more electronic gadgets, which has created a demand for larger handbags and totes. So, it comes as no surprise that more and more women are turning to their chiropractors for neck and back pain treatment.
“I have had patients complain about shoulder pain and lower back pain,” says Gerard W. Clum, D.C., spokesperson for the Foundation. “When I ask the patients to show me the size and the weight of their handbags, it can be in excess of 10 to 15 lbs., which can cause serious risk to your overall health.”
Dr. Clum suggests that it is important to reduce the weight of the handbag to no more than 1 to 2 lbs. It’s also important not to carry the entire weight of the bag on one shoulder. This can lead to improper weight distribution in the neck, shoulder and back. Postural imbalances can have consequences to the spinal discs, body structures and overall nervous system function.
He recommends using a bag with two shoulder straps or pulling a carrying case with wheels if you must take heavier items with you. But it is important to know that when it comes to health, less is always better.
“Heavy, cumbersome bags may leave you with back, neck, and shoulder pain, even headaches and can aggravate or accelerate arthritic conditions,” says Clum. “It’s important to find ways to stay healthy while staying in fashion.