Ollie Owl Highlights iPosture Syndrome in Children and Encourages Parents to Check the Health of their Child’s Spine
Co-founder of Ollie Owl, Dr. Leigh Sheldrick explores the relationship between iPad and children, and the damage electronic handhelds are doing to children’s postures and spines.
... parents are becoming more aware that the decisions they make for their children today can profoundly affect their future health, and they’re more driven to invest time, money and effort into making those decisions.
With 72 per cent of Australian secondary school students, and 53 per cent of primary school students labelled as ‘high users’ of small screen recreation (SSR), maintaining sound spinal health and posture in the youth of Australian has never been more important.*
An article published by the Chiropractors’ Association of Australia (VIC) reported an increase in parents expressing concerns about their child’s back and posture problems. To make allowances for SSR, experts suggest that children either be limited by the amount of time spent on devices, or advised on the correct posture to assume when using the devices.
Co-founder of Ollie Owl – a company with specifically designed pillows to support posture and promote deep sleep – Dr. Leigh Sheldrick encourages parents to monitor iPosture Syndrome in children by following one easy step. www.ollieowl.com.au
“A lot of parents have been hearing the term iPosture Syndrome. It’s a relatively new term and applies in particular to the digital generation. iPosture Syndrome occurs when the head leans forward of the body while a person is looking downward. This causes a relative increase in the load on the muscles in the back of the head and shoulders and can lead not only to poor posture but also complaints of muscle fatigue, eye strain, tiredness and general discomfort,” says Dr. Sheldrick.
“It’s really important for parents to monitor iPosture Syndrome in their children at home. They can do this by looking at their child side on and checking to see that the middle of the ear is lining up with the middle of the shoulder when the child is standing in a relaxed position. What we are seeing so often now is children continue to have a forward head posture even after they put the device down and that is the most worrying thing.” www.olllieowl.com.au
According to Dr. Sheldrick, iPosture Syndrome can be caused by any activities that involve long periods of looking downwards. Typically this occurs when children are using a laptop or a digital device such as an iPhone or iPad. A forward head drop of only 2.5 centimetres actually doubles the weight of the head’s pull on the shoulder. “It’s no wonder we’re seeing an enormous increase in the number of children coming into our practices with neck and shoulder problems,” says Dr. Sheldrick.
To protect a child from developing iPosture Syndrome (also known as ‘text neck’), Dr. Sheldrick recommends that parents:
- Ensure the child is maintaining an upright posture when using computers, laptops, iPads or mobile phones.
- Encourage their child to do age appropriate stretches and activities to help with preventing text neck.
- Introduce a supportive contoured pillow to the child’s sleeping routine, to optimise the position of the spine while they sleep and give their body the best chance to heal and recover.
“I think overall, parents are becoming more aware that the decisions they make for their children today can profoundly affect their future health, and they’re more driven to invest time, money and effort into making those decisions. Parents seem better informed about text neck or iPosture Syndrome these days, and their expectations of appropriate products that maintain children’s health and wellbeing appear to be higher,” says Dr. Sheldrick.
About Ollie Owl
Dr. Leigh Sheldrick is an Australian chiropractor with twenty years’ experience caring for children and families. With thousands of studies supporting the importance of sleep, Dr. Sheldrick noticed a gap in the importance placed on the posture and quality of children’s pillows. This led to the founding of Ollie Owl, a business dedicated to providing age appropriate supportive contoured pillows to improve children’s quality of sleep and protect their posture while they rest.
Her extensive experience studying and nurturing the health of the spine motivated her to positively contribute to improving children’s health through quality sleep. With the help of Tania Beattie, a massage therapist and long-time friend, she designed a collection of contoured pillows to improve children’s sleeping positions, using low allergenic materials.
Since the introduction of Ollie Owl pillows, Dr. Sheldrick and Tania have been overwhelmed by the number of parents seeking information to help their children sleep. Dr. Sheldrick has worked in various multidisciplinary clinics in Melbourne, country Victoria and the UK, where she has gleaned many stories about the ‘power of the pillow’ and how having the correct pillow can transform people’s lives.
Dr. Sheldrick holds a degree in Applied Science (chiro) and has done a multitude of post graduate programs in children’s health. The mother of two is a member of the Australian Spinal Research Foundation, the Chiropractic Association of Australia and the College of Chiropractic Neuro-developmental Paediatrics.
Tania brings her passion for children’s health and wellbeing, as well as her expertise in administration and customer service, to ensure Ollie Owl customers always have an outstanding experience when purchasing an Ollie Owl pillow.
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- Contact Information
- Dr. Leigh Sheldrick
- Ollie Owl
- (61) 413 307 815
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