Ever since we started using phones and tablets, life has eased up a notch. We no longer feel the need to have a stack of books on our shelves, because we can now carry a whole library in our pockets. We no longer must wait months to hear from our loved ones through letters; instead, we can talk to them at the tap of a button.
These are just a few of the gifts that technology – especially our mobile phones have brought us. Despite being time savers and resource savers, our phones can be a literal pain in the neck.Text neck, as it is commonly known, occurs as a result of spending a lot of our time with our necks bent down.
As shown in the diagram below, the longer and the further you stoop your head, the more pressure you put on your neck. This may lead to upper back, arm, and neck pain. In
some cases, you may even experience numbness into your arms and hands.
To give you clearer picture of what is happening at 60 degrees, imagine carrying a six year old on your neck for 11 hours a day. That is how long an average person spends on their phone.
The good news is there is hope. There are few things you can do to ensure you don’t have neck pain. You can also use these methods to treat text neck.
1. Stay active and watch your posture
If you spend a large chunk of your day hunched over your phone, tablet or laptop, this is for you. Try committing some time to stretching and walking around to reduce the pressure on your neck.
Also watch your posture and make sure you sit up, avoid slouching as much as you can.
If you use your neck as a crutch, please stop it! When you have to use your phone to talk, as tempting as it may be do not multi-task. Hold your phone with your hands.
2. Align your device with your eyes.
Instead of bending your neck all the way over, you can hold your phone up to your eyes. This reduces the strain on your neck.
Alternatively, you also use your eyes and not your whole head to check out your device. You can also do this with your PC and laptop.
Make sure your desk allows direct alignment between your eyes and device. You can also get an adjustable chair to help with this.
Exercises can help strengthen and relax your neck. Try the following two exercises if you feel your neck is strained and you may get some relief. If the exercises happen to aggravate your neck pain, please refrain from performing them and see a manual therapist. Alternatively, you can book in to see a practitioner at our clinic.
- Exx 1 giphy (mention reps and sets).
- Exx 2 giphy
As difficult as it may be, try to hold your phone a little higher to avoid stooping your neck.However, if you cannot manage that, try some or all the measures above and your neck pain should start improving.