Do You Have Text Neck?
In any given day, how long do you think you spend on your computer or cell phone? If you’re like most adults, it’s probably about two to four hours a day. And what about your posture? Are you maintaining good neck and shoulder positioning while using electronics? If not, you could be experiencing a phenomenon that has been dubbed “text neck”.
What is Text Neck?
In a previous post on our blog, we discussed Forward Head Posture, which is essentially what is happening with text neck. Basically, the more we move our head forward so that it isn’t over our shoulders, the more pressure we place on our cervical spine. The forward movement doesn’t even have to be much; as little as a 15 degree angle can place 27 pounds of pressure on your neck. Bend forward to a 60 degree angle and you place about 60 pounds of pressure on your neck! It goes without saying that this amount of stress can cause some serious long-term damage, including muscle soreness, pinched nerves, and even herniated discs.
Avoiding Text Neck
Luckily, there are some very easy fixes to avoid the pain caused from bending forward so often.
- Use your eyes to look down at your phone or computer, without bending your neck.
- Take a short break once an hour to stretch. Bend your head forward, then backward, then left, then right, holding each position for about 20 to 30 seconds each. You can also work on rotation by turning your head to the left and right and holding for the same amount of time.
- Limit electronic usage. Sometimes you just need to take a break!
- Use a cervical roll. You don’t even need to purchase an expensive roll; take a towel and roll it lengthwise, then place it underneath the curve of your neck. Lay on the roll for about twenty minutes before bed.
- Get regular adjustments. Chiropractic care can help reduce inflammation in muscles and correct poor posture by properly aligning the spine and allowing the body to work at its best.
For a lot of people, phone and computer use are inevitable, but that doesn’t mean we can’t be mindful of our spinal health while we use those electronics.
If you’re feeling the effects of “text neck” and want to begin chiropractic care, call the office and mention this post to receive a first-time discount of $49 for your exam, x-rays, and first adjustment!