Human posture has seen varying issues as the decades have come and gone. I’m sure we’ve all seen the exaggerated mid back curve referred to as “granny hump” and heard of how a big fall or rear-end collision results in whiplash, but with the advancement of technology we now have a postural hashtag for the early 2000’s and it’s being called “Text Neck”.
But how serious could it be, really? As shown in the graphic below, the amount of strain put on the neck increases as your gaze lowers to meet the device. An average head weighs between 10-12 pounds, but this amount is compounded by several factors. In a previous post we showed the impact of forward head posture, and now we see how a consistent downward gaze is adding strain to the structure.
The Text Neck Institute warns that if left untreated, serious permanent damage can result from text neck. Flattening of the spinal curve, spinal misalignment and degeneration, onset of early arthritis, disc herniation and compression, nerve and muscle damage, loss of lung volume capacity, and gastrointestinal problems are a few examples associated with text neck.
So what are we to do, ditch the smart phones? Absolutely not. Technology is practically a necessity in our society. Pew Research found that nearly eight in ten Americans use text messaging on their cell phones and The Wireless Association states “1.91 trillion text messages were sent to the U.S last year.” “Texting has become the dominant form of communication” and this trend doesn’t show signs of stopping, along with this profound problem of “text neck” in young people.
Early prevention may be the best approach with this, but what if you have lost your cervical (neck) curve already? Don’t stress, there’s good news! You can find a doctor in your area that has been trained to restore these curves to the spine and bring ease back to the nervous system that is overly stressed due to this chronic issue. Chiropractors that approach the spine with specific adjustments and exercises to restructure the curve can help even those with reversed curves in their necks.
If you think this may be an issue that you are dealing with don’t hesitate to contact our office! And while you’re at it, bring the family! We are Longmont’s only office certified with the International Chiropractic Pediatric Association (ICPA) and the American Pregnancy Association (APA). Chiropractic care is safe and effective for everyone!