• ChiroHaven | Khoa Le

Do you get text neck?

What are the chances you’re reading this article from your handheld device, engaging in the serious but harmful position text neck? (Definition: head forward, shoulders rounded, and back slumped.) This position, also known as “text neck,” is a real epidemic.

There’s been debate if text neck is really the problem its chalked up to be. Recently, researchers in Brazil studied 150 young adults, ages 18-21, and found that text neck had no connection to neck pain. However, they did note that the high mobile phone use and lack of exercise could be associated with neck and back pain.

People spend approximately five hours every day looking at their phones — and that can lead to some serious text-neck aches and pains, explains chiropractor Ciara Cappo, DC, of Cappo Chiropractic & Sports Therapy. Researchers at Harvard Medical Health predict that 7 out of 10 people will experience neck aches at some point in their lives.

Here’s what text neck does to your body: It compresses and tightens the muscle, tendon, and ligament structures in front of the neck while lengthening the muscles, tendon, and ligament structures behind the neck. “The human head weighs 10 pounds. For every inch your head is tilted forward, the weight your neck has to carry doubles,” explains Cappo. Overtime, that extra strain adds up.

But ditching our devices isn’t really an option. Instead, what we can do is make sure we exercise right and practice good habits to prevent the aches and pains associated with text neck. So remember: There’s no single method guaranteed to alleviate your tech-induced pains. But, at the end of the day, it doesn’t hurt to stretch and exercise to keep your muscles active and flexible.

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