Do you spend hours looking at or using your phone? Do you experience frequent neck pain, especially after using the device? You might be suffering from text neck. Studies have shown that the typical posture of someone looking at their phone places stress on the cervical spine.
On average, the human head weighs between 10 to 12 pounds. Looking down while using a mobile device increases the angle of the head tilt. This increased angle results in an increase in the weight on the neck by up to 60 pounds. This situation results in the text neck condition.
Text neck is a relatively new term developed to describe a condition associated with the overuse of smartphones. The constant use of electronic devices, especially the cellphone, results in repetitive stress and overload on the cervical spine.
The muscles and joints in the spine are affected by the prolonged neck or forward head posture. This leads to headaches, neck pain, back pain, shoulder pain, and arm numbness. Text neck affects people of all ages, but it is becoming increasingly common among kids, especially adolescents.
Some common symptoms can be attributed to text neck. The symptoms are a stiff neck, including neck soreness as well as difficulty turning the head, pain, and headaches. Most people describe a dull ache or pain in one spot or around the neck.
Some people experience radiating pain from the shoulder blades to the shoulder and into the arms. Muscle tightness can cause tension headaches or headaches affecting the back part of the head.
It is important to find out how you can correct or reduce the effects of text neck. The first and most important step is to reduce the time you spend using your phone or other handheld devices. It is also important to always be aware of your posture.
Always try to maintain a neutral or upright head position. Try to pull back your shoulders to keep your head in the correct position. Try as much as possible to hold the mobile device at eye level when reading. It also helps to take frequent breaks when using the devices. Regular exercise can reduce symptoms.
Research has shown that strength and flexibility in the neck and back can help people tolerate extra stress. Regular exercise will help ensure that your spine is in a better position to handle the additional strain. A physical therapist can perform a thorough examination before developing a treatment plan that will meet the patient’s specific needs.
Chiropractic care is one of the most effective ways to treat text neck. Chiropractors have the skills to correct the vertebrae misalignments in the neck and spine. Chiropractic treatment involves stretches, spinal manipulation, and exercises that help relieve misalignments and pain. The treatments also help strengthen weak muscles. The chiropractor can come up with a treatment plan to alleviate symptoms and restore nerve function.
As handheld devices play a huge role in people’s lives, people should use them correctly. If you have been experiencing symptoms due to frequent smartphone use, you need to visit a chiropractor.
For more on text neck, visit Advanced Spinal Care at our office in Charleston, South Carolina. You can call (843) 350-5022 today to schedule an appointment.