Updated: Apr 28
Before Covid 19 became a huge part in our current life, did you know that text neck is also considered as an epidemic problem? in 2014. a news from Washington Post titled 'Text neck is becoming an 'epidemic and could wreck your spine'. What is text neck and how can it be a major problem for us? Today, we will discuss on the topic of text neck.
Text neck was defined as a modern term by a Chiropractor by the name of Dr DL Fishman. He describes it as repeated stress injury and pain in the neck resulting from excessive watching or texting on hand held devices over a sustained period of time. It is considered as a 'epidemic' as text neck is becoming so common that every individual is literally looking down all the time.
Is text neck serious? Of course it is. The detrimental effect it causes to our spine is beyond imaginable. Here is what it can do to your body. It compresses and tightens the muscle, tendon and ligament structure in front of the neck and subsequently lengthening the muscle, tendon and ligaments at the back of the neck. The average weight of a human head is about 4.5 kilograms. For every inch your head is tilted to the front, the weight your neck has to carry increases by two fold. Can you imagine the amount of stress your neck and shoulders have been put into over so many years? Scary isn't it.
Some of the symptoms that can arise from text neck are:
Numbness in the forearm, hands,
Weakness in the hands
With the development of technology, it has brought us a lot of convenience and has helped us in many different aspect of life. Devices such as laptop and handphone has become a norm in our daily life. Everything is at a push of a button these days. From scheduling meeting, ordering food, shopping and etc. Therefore, ditching our devices is not exactly the best way to combat this problem. Instead, what we can do is to adapt a proper posture/good habits and exercise right to prevent the aches and discomfort that is associated with text neck.
Therefore, here we are once again to provide you some easy to follow tips and tricks on how to prevent text neck syndrome. Let us begin!
1. Stand up straighter: Might sound too easy, however if you have notice in the public, you will realized most of us are actually hunching most of the time. A good posture, with the chin tuck in and shoulder pulled back, keeps your body aligned in a neutral position. To learn more about posture, you can check out our previous articles titled posture 1.0 and 2.0
2. Raise the phone: You should move the phone (or laptop, Pc, tablet) up closer to eye level so that the head does not have to be tilted forward
3. Take frequent breaks: Spend some time away from the phone. If needed set an alarm
so that it reminds you to take a much needed break
4. Exercise regularly: An active body is definitely better than hunching most of the time. Our body is also designed to move all the time. A stronger back and neck will be able to withstand extra stress
In general, these tips should help in terms of preventing text neck syndrome
Share the tips if you find it useful to your friends and family! Together, let us have a healthier spine! As the saying goes, a healthy spine means a healthier life! Take care guys!
Excellent spine, Excellent health