Who’s most at risk of developing neck pain? Well according to our Fareham chiropractor at Homewood Chiropractic, anyone who lives in the 21st Century! If you are anything like the average Smartphone user, you’re probably among the people who constantly hold your mobile device in a non “neck-friendly” position! You probably also spend a great deal of time texting or looking down to use your phone!
Sound familiar? If so, it’s about time you stop. Because we have a modern problem at hand and it is known as ‘Text Neck’.
So what’s it all about?
To put it in simple terms, your head weighs about a dozen pounds. But as you bend your neck forward and downwards to use your mobile phone, the weight on your cervical spine begins to increase. At a 15-degree angle, this weight is about 27 pounds, at 30 degrees it’s 40 pounds, at 45 degrees it’s 49 pounds, and at 60 degrees it’s 60 pounds. If you are having trouble imagining what 60 pounds feels like, think how it would feel to carry an 8 year old child around your neck for the total number of hours that you look down at your device!
What are the symptoms?
If you experience any of these symptoms, you could be experiencing ‘text neck’. Usually, there will be pain and soreness in the neck area. But if you look down at your device too often each day, it might lead to the following issues:
- Upper back pain which can range from a chronic, nagging pain to sharp, severe upper back muscle spasms.
- Shoulder pain and tightness, which may result in painful shoulder muscle spasm.
- If a cervical nerve becomes pinched, pain and possibly neurological symptoms can radiate down your arm and into your hand.
So how can you avoid ‘text neck’?
Of course, the first thing you should do is limit the amount of time you spend using your mobile device.
When you do use it, hold your phone at eye level.
If you have a tablet or iPad, put it on a stand at eye level so that you avoid adding extra stress and pressure on your neck.
Look after your spine – it’s so much more important than keeping up with your notifications!