How to Fix that “Text Neck”
By Dr. Brenda Kingen
It never fails, we used to have “Wii elbow” or “Blackberry thumb,” or more commonly, we hear about “Tennis elbow.” Now we have “Text neck.” But basically, they all are repetitive stress disorders.
Anytime that there is an increase in repetitive, abnormal stress on a joint, there’s going to be pain. With this new disorder, “text neck,” it’s about the faulty position we hold our heads in while we work on the computer or smartphone.
The head weighs 10-14 pounds. For every degree that you tilt forward, the amount of weight on your neck grows exponentially. At 30 degrees forward, the head weighs 40 pounds. At 60 degrees forward, it weighs 60 pounds. And it’s that 45 to 60 degree angle that we tend to hang out at when we look at our smartphones.
Imagine all the times you check your email or Facebook every day, and how many hours that adds up to.
If you already have neck pain, you probably instinctively avoid positions that hurt. If you’re having some discomfort, but not full-blown pain, this fix is especially for you. It’s all about alignment and finding neutral. A loaded cervical spine (your neck), in a poor position creates abnormal stress and pain. Fix your alignment and then lose that “text neck.”
First, sit or stand up straight. Then align your head like there’s a book on top of it (an oldie but goodie). Tuck your chin in so it’s not jutting forward, tuck it back like you’re giving yourself a double chin. If it’s uncomfortable, back off about 20%. That’ll be close to your spinal neutral position. Then roll your shoulder blades back and down, raise your hands up in front of you with your elbows bent, and look down with your eyes. BOOM! Text neck abolished!
Try this out for 21 days. It takes 21 days for a movement performed every day to become a habit.
Dr. Brenda Kingen has 25 years of experience utilizing Chiropractic adjustments, Acupuncture, Active Release Technique and Laser Therapy in her practice.
Kingen Chiropractic Wellness Center
2001 S. Hanley Rd., Ste. 220
Brentwood, MO 63144