Is Tech Neck Avoidable in Today’s World?
Did you know, the average American spends more than 9 hours a day staring at some type of screen? Have you ever timed yourself to see how long you actually stare at a screen every day? I can promise you it is much more than you realize. Whether it is a Smartphone, TV, tablet or computer, most Americans are spending more than a normal full-time shift at work staring at a screen. Even young children are spending countless hours staring at a screen as well. This will increase as they get older. We dare to even mention the radiation expose that each of us are having as well which has plenty of harmful effects from the world we live in, which now includes 5G and up to 60 G. This all affects our blood flow and restricts and damages the small arteries (capillaries) in our body. Is this the life we now choose for ourselves?
As you’re staring down at your phone, tablet or computer, you are putting more unnecessary weight on the cervical spine. You see we have a natural curve in our neck that allows for impact and normal range of motion. As soon as we begin to “reverse” this curve all your new troubles are just beginning to take place. The average human head weighs 12 pounds. Even just a small tilt forward or to the side to send a text message will increase the amount of weight being supported by your cervical spine. The more you tilt, the worse it gets. I can actually say that the fact that so many people are now all staring down at their screens is creating NEW patients for us daily. We are not talking about older people who will reverse their curve through age related conditions, we are talking about young people; 20 – 30 year olds. In our Houston office we now see reversed necks (cervical spines) more than ever before.
This posture is causing more people to suffer from strain throughout the shoulders and the neck everyday. Making their upper body painful and stiff with restricted movement. Eventually the lower spine will respond and begin to lose its curve as well. I call this the “Caveman” look, patients walk in like someone who is getting ready to use a walker from having a completely C curve spine.
Many chiropractors are calling this “tech neck” because it’s caused completely by technology. The hunched over posture may cause tight and restricted muscles in the shoulders and neck, but it will eventually cause disc damage or a pinched nerve. Your hands and fingers will also begin to tingle and become numb.
Can Chiropractic Care Prevent Tech Neck?
In a world where phones are attached to most people and computers are vital for most to function at work, is it possible to prevent tech neck? Is it possible to actually REVERSE this condition? The answer is yes, but it will take time and a change in habits (the biggest challenge).
The easiest way to prevent tech neck is to spend less time in front of all of your screens. Now, before you before stiff and anxious and just say NO I am not giving up my technology….it can be done. This isn’t going to be easy for most people, because many of us work in front of a computer all day. Here are some tips that may be a good start for you.
You can start by replacing your laptop at meetings with a notebook. This is a pretty easy change and can be some of the easiest changes in your home as well. Instead of scrolling through social media while watching TV or spending time with your family, become more present and involved with those around you at home. For the moment put the phone away. (Your kids may cry and scream, but remember YOU are the parent).
You should do your best to also limit your time in front of the TV and computer at home. Choose an amount of time you will spend with your devices every day at home, set a timer and when that time is gone, put them away for good. Read a book, play a game, go outside or do anything that gets you away from screens. Learn to develop your inner self, go deeper into you and discover parts of yourself that you have yet to find.
There are only 24 hours per day. Most people only get 1-2 hours outside weekly. If you spend more than 9 hours in front of a screen and another 8 hours sleeping, you only have 7 hours left. About half that time is likely spent getting ready for work, eating meals or preparing meals. That doesn’t leave much left.
Chiropractic Treatments for Tech Neck
While the best solution is to limit your times in front of screens or avoid screens at home when possible, do put the effort into it. Your life is more than just a screen to stare at. The best part about all of this is chiropractic treatment is truthfully the best care for tech neck. With the right treatment, you can find relief and get back your good posture. Surgery is usually never an option for this condition.
Together, let’s give you and your family the best quality of life that is possible. Don’t spend time worrying about your health, take care of your body, your spine and live life to the fullest where all of your adventures are fun, exciting and fulfilled.
Dr Patrick Price your Houston Holistic Chiropractor