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Is your tablet or smart phone actually killing you?

How Chiropractic Can Help Reduce the Dangers of Text Neck

Text neck is one of the negative results of our uncontrollable affinity for smartphones. The commercialization of smart devices such as the smartphone and tablets revolutionized the way we communicate, do business, exercise, eat, and live every day.

However, a combination of smartphones, addictive video games, and the instant gratification of social media have led to many negatives within our society especially with teens who can spend up to 9 hours per day glued to their mobile devices. If your kid spends all his or her free time hunched over a smartphone, they stand a high risk of getting a condition called “text neck” and its debilitating effect on the neck and upper back.

What exactly is Text Neck?

Text neck relates to the posture of your neck while using a smartphone or other handheld device. It is an uncomfortable position that involves looking downward, placing excessive stress on your neck, back and shoulder muscles. The posture puts a severe strain on your spine and can lead to long-term and immediate health problems.

Text neck can cause long-term damage to your spine and can be a source of pain and discomfort if you don’t seek treatment. Studies suggest that text neck can lead to severe pain in the neck, upper back and shoulders, and disc herniation.  Additionally, text neck can disrupt the normal function of the neural system, potentially leading to full body pain, especially in your limbs, neck region and lower back. However, chiropractic can provide relief for these problems.

How to Reduce the Effects of Text Neck

First, you need to reduce the amount of time spent on smartphones and similar devices such as tablets and eBook readers. You have to take breaks from your mobile device no matter how tempting. Do not take your phone to bed and set timers to remind you to put your phone or tablet down. Doing only this will reduce a lot of strain on your neck.

In the long-term, you need to correct any postural defects. A chiropractor can help correct spinal misalignment and muscle issues to ensure a natural healing process takes its course.

One solution your chiropractor can recommend is this simple exercise chin tuck in your health plan for full recovery from text neck issues.

Chin Tuck

The chin tuck is a simple workout you can do almost anywhere. The stretch works the neck muscles, improves spinal awareness and increases your head's alignment.

Method

1. While sitting in a chair, maintain an upright position while keeping your chin parallel to the ground. Keep your head straight and then draw your head and chin back while making a double chin. Perform the move slowly to avoid jamming your head back suddenly. The back of your neck should feel stretched.

2. Try to visualize your head moving upward as if a string is pulling it like a puppet, and elongate your neck deliberately. Actively push your skull's base away from your neck's base. Maintain this position for three deep breaths while relaxing your jaw.

3. Release your chin forward and repeat as desired.

Yoga

Yoga can help enhance movement patterns, improve breath work and promote body awareness. With yoga, you can reduce the neck pain that comes with text neck and reduce the strain on your muscles.

Work with your chiropractor to identify any spinal issues related to text neck and the best solution to a pain-free back, neck and spine.   If you are someone or know someone who is suffering with chronic back or neck pain due to text neck, encourage them to call our office at (908) 221-0808 or visit our website at www.somersethillschiropractic.com to make an appointment.

Yours in health,

Dr. Brian Wallace

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