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A Pain in the Neck


Man with neck pain while texting


“A pain in the neck”, such a common phrase but unfortunately it can be a reality for so many of us. Whether you are a child, teen, adult or senior, we are all at risk for having neck pain at the expense of our use of technology and smart devices. We have all witnessed the common phenomenon of “text neck”, which results from people spending an increasing amount of time with their head down looking at smart phones, iPads, tablets and e-readers.  There is no doubt that our smart devices are important in our daily lives as they keep us connected and entertained. The attraction even appeals to different generations as we can play games, search the Internet, share instant messages or photos and even stream movies! With so many advantages, how can this be bad for us?



How texting impacts your spine

 It is important we remember that the use of smart devices can be very addictive and unfortunately comes at a cost.  As we sit huddled over our devices, it is no surprise that we may be doing more harm then good.  The unnatural posture of having our head titled forward can cause headaches, neck or upper back discomfort or pain in the arms and hands.  Even if we enjoy short bursts of activities on our devices, we can lose track of time causing these negative effects to slowly accumulate. In a normal upright posture, our head typically weighs 10-12 lbs.  According to a 2014 study in Surgical Technology International, even a 15 degree forward head tilt, which is a modest angle, adds up to 27 lbs of added pressure, which more than doubles the load on our neck and upper back muscles.

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