Are you a chronic texter? What about your kids? Maybe you enjoy reading books on your tablet for hours on end. Pay close attention to what comes next because it’s going to save you a lot of future headaches, quite literally. We’re not saying throw out your cell phone or Kindle, but being aware of how much you use your devices just might be a good idea.
What the heck is Text-Neck?
Text-Neck is a new syndrome that’s affecting millions of Americans every year and they don’t even know it, or they just aren’t aware. Maybe they just don’t care. We at least want to do our due diligence and give you some facts. Everyone has a neutral position, just like a car. It’s your best resting position that causes the least amount of stress on your skeletal system. When you’re texting, your head is leaned forward and downward in front of your shoulders angled typically between 45-60 degrees. This is a forward neck posture that isn’t good to be in hours at a time, yet we do it anyway, don’t we?
When your head is in a neutral position directly above your shoulders, it puts about ten to twelve pounds of stress on those neck and shoulder muscles. Big deal.
Picture yourself carrying around four to six ten pound bowling balls around your neck. Yes, you heard that right, four to six. That’s forty to sixty pounds of stress you’re putting on those neck and shoulder muscles of yours giving you poor neck posture.
So yeah, you probably guessed that Text-Neck isn’t necessarily making it on the nice list and you need to be thinking about what to do for better neck posture. Smartphones and tablets aren’t going away. It’s our culture so get used to it, but beware of some of these symptoms.
Nearly seventy-seven percent of Americans own a smartphone1 and they spend upward of fourteen hundred hours on their phone each year. Teenagers spend nearly five thousand hours2 so there’s a pretty darn good chance some of the following symptoms are starting to pop up:
- Spinal Misalignment
- Chronic Neck Pain
- Chronic Headaches
- Upper Back Pain
- Muscle Tightness
- Shoulder Pain
You wouldn’t drive your car out of alignment, would you? Well, you could but eventually it’ll veer so far off the road you’ll crash and burn, right?
When your spine is out of alignment essentially it’s the same thing. Research from the 2013 Journal of Gerontology says if your neck is out of alignment by even a few degrees it increases your chance of coronary artery disease by sixty-four percent!
In case you didn’t know, heart disease is the number one killer of Americans every year. So are we saying texting leads directly to heart disease? No. We are saying that being aware of your posture is crucial to your overall health.
Powerful research also shows how spine misalignment can affect your brain function, according to the Journal of Spine. If your check engine light is on, you just don’t ignore it.
Maybe you’re having symptoms of Text-Neck, maybe you’re not, either way being aware of your posture and altering the way you sit, stand, work or text can dramatically affect how you’ll feel years to come.
If you’re reading this right now on your phone or your computer, check your posture this very second. See?? Give us a call and we can help give you some exercises to help reverse some of these posture effects!