The term “text neck” has been circulating in the media recently as a modern age condition that is becoming more and more frequently diagnosed.
But are mobile phones really to blame for your neck pain and if so, why?
According to our chiropractor in Ealing, adults and children could be risking long-term damage to their cervical spines by frequently tilting their heads while texting. People also tend to use their Smartphones for prolonged periods of time which further adds to the problem.
Our chiropractor explains that in a normal standing position, the curves of the neck and back stay in their correct alignment. But when the chin is dropped to the chest in a texting position, the entire cervical structure is stretched and strained. The human head (which typically weighs between 10lb and 12lb) becomes significantly heavier for the neck to bear as it is tilted forward which can cause pain and damage in the affected area. Other symptoms of “text neck” can include:
- Sharp pain in the upper back or shoulders
- Tightness and pain in the shoulders
- Shoulder muscle spasms
- Pinched nerves in the cervical spine leading to pain and neurological symptoms
- Early onset arthritis
Our Ealing chiropractor shares the following three tips to prevent the development and advancement of “text neck”:
1: Always hold your mobile phone or tablet at your eye level. Your devices should be placed in a position that is comfortable for you – if you need to tilt your head forward to see the screen then it’s in the wrong position!
2: Take regular breaks away from your mobile or tablet and set your alarm to remind you if you think you are likely to forget. When you take a break, change position, stretch and walk around to keep your spine moving. It’s also a good idea to start implementing some “mobile/ tablet- free” time into your schedule every day. Switch your phone off and put it out of your sight aside. This will soon become a habit and you will probably find that you actually enjoy the peace and quiet away from it!
3: Think about the posture you adopt when you undertake other daily activities. Do you tilt your head forward when you drive? Do you slouch or bend your head forward your when you eat or watch the television? Remember that any activity that causes you to look down for prolonged periods of time may put you at risk of developing painful and uncomfortable symptoms.
Small changes may just make big differences to your neck health.