"Text neck" is a phrase that has received a lot of attention from the media lately. It refers to neck pain and a multitude of symptoms that ensue from not only texting but also the utilization of many other mobile devices, such as smartphones, tablets, Kindles and iPads. The most common complaints affiliated with the condition are headaches, neck pain, shoulder pain, arm pain as well as numbness and tingling of the upper extremities.
These symptoms are due to prolonged, forward-head posture-or in other words, forward bending of the neck to look down at handheld devices. This action puts excessive strain on the muscles, ligaments and tendons on the backside of your head, neck and upper back. It can also contribute to permanent and irreversible changes in the vertebral joints of your spine, leading to loss of cervical curve and even arthritis.
Medical research shows that forward head posture reduces lung capacity, which can lead to heart and vascular problems. Bending your head in a forward position for extended periods of time can also have negative effects on the gastrointestinal tract.
To avoid the risks of becoming a "text neck" sufferer, hold your device up in front of you at eye level to avoid forward head posture. Stretching, strengthening and facilitating muscles of the posterior chain, which includes the suboccipital muscle, lower scapular fixators and the deep neck flexors, will also help to improve symptoms of "text neck." Proper muscle care can be accomplished by performing scapular retractions/depression exercises, neck/chin glides and reverse shoulder shrugs.
Doctors of chiropractic are trained to observe and make recommendations in postural corrections to help with "text neck," a health condition that is becoming increasingly more prevalent in society. Massage therapy, along with physiotherapy, physical therapy and other therapies, can also be used to treat "text neck."
* Reference: Dr. Fishman, Text NeckTM . Dr. Fishman is the founder and pioneer of treatment for Text Neck. For more information, visit http://text-neck.com.