Every year on the 19th of October, orthopedic surgeons around the world are celebrating World Pediatric Bone and Joint Day. Shortened to PB&J Day, this special day brings awareness to children with musculoskeletal conditions such as childhood obesity. Specifically, it places an emphasis on helping with treatment and prevention in children. To meet this goal, programs and activities are being developed through research, education, and advocacy to reduce the severity of the disease.
More than 126 million Americans are impacted by musculoskeletal conditions, according to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons. Many of these cases are being brought on by obesity developed during childhood. This obesity raises the risk of getting certain types of arthritis in children. Far too many children are not being diagnosed with arthritis in a timely manner. Resulting in children unnecessarily living with muscle pain, joint stiffness, growing pains, fatigue, and depression. Arthritis affects children as well as adults, with about 1 in 1,000 children having arthritis. To prevent these symptoms from happening, the United States Bone and Joint Initiative (USBJI) Pediatric Specialty Group’s tries to identify the primary areas of concern regarding children’s musculoskeletal health and develop a solution.
The good news is that both childhood arthritis and obesity are treatable. The main treatment focuses on weight loss to prevent obesity and arthritis from ever occurring. Losing even a little weight can have a huge impact on physical and mental health. Therefore, youth sports can play an important role in a child’s physical and emotional development. Participating in youth sports as well as eating healthy, can have many positive benefits to a child’s growth. Sports encourages physical exertion, which in turn decreases the risk for obesity. It can have a positive effect on a child’s emotional well-being, as well as help develop social dexterity and promote leadership skills. Most importantly, sports are there for children to go out and have fun!
Musculoskeletal conditions such as childhood obesity can have a lasting effect on a child’s overall health and can continue through adulthood. It can cause kids to develop arthritis and if left untreated, they might have to live with pain for the rest of their life. Youth sports is a great way to get your child up and active. All that physical exertion coupled with a healthy diet will help prevent obesity and arthritis from occurring.
For more info on PB&J Day, click here.
Article written by William Graves.