Texting is a pain in the neck

As we increasingly focus on sending messages via phone rather than chatting, researchers are seeing a new kind of pain dubbed “text neck.”

According to a study published in the journal Surgical Technology International, text neck results from constantly bending the neck to look down. The head weighs 10-12 pounds when the spine is in neutral position, and as it bends forward, the relative weight on the neck increases. At a 45 degree angle, the neck supports about 49 pounds. Over time that kind of stress overload can cause:

  • Wear and tear on your spine
  • Tears within disc
  • Slipped or herniated disc

Additionally, holding a phone or tablet at chest-or-waist level and looking down at it causes neck muscles to shorten and tighten, and shoulders to round forward.

While the upper part of the spine is normally curved to allow nerves space to pass through the neck and throughout the body, crunching that space, and the large nerve there can cause pain to spread all the way down to the even the fingers.

Get relief from text neck by:

  • Stretching at home
  • Getting a massage
  • Seeing a chiropractor or physical therapist

And remember, before you get totally absorbed by something on your phone or tablet, think about your posture and realign your spine.