You probably already know it, and honestly, you probably don’t want your fears confirmed but, cell phone use is bad for your back. In fact, it is bad for your brain too, but we will visit that idea later. “Smartphone Slouching” has been shown by research to cause poor posture that can lead to chronic health issues such as pain. Mostly the pain shows up in your back and neck abut can affect your joints also such as your wrists, and knees. Tennis Elbow is another common pain that results from texting. Digestive problems and circulation problems are becoming more and more common too.
These problems are impacting children more than adults because of the amount of time kids spend on their cell phones. “Text Neck” causes the muscles in the neck to tighten and creates a misalignment of the spinal segments in the child’s back. In the short run, this results in neck pain. In the long run, it can create degenerative disc disease that can give your child chronic health problems as they age.
Why is Cell Phone Use Bad for Your Back?
When you are standing straight up and looking forward with your arms at your side 10 – 12 pounds of pressure is being put on your spine. A research study was performed in 2014 and found that the more you look down, the heavier your head is on your spine. This ultimately causes BIG problems for people. Check out the numbers. When you look down 15 degrees, like you would on your phone, the pressure on your spine jumps to 27 lbs. When you look down 30 degrees, it’s 40 pounds of pressure; at 45 degrees, it’s 49 pounds of pressure; and at 60 degrees, it’s a dangerous 60 pounds of pressure on your spine. Considering most kids bend their necks between upwards of 45 degrees when they are using their phones, that’s a lot of undue stress on the spine. That stress can have debilitating effects over time.
What is Tech Neck and Why Is It Bad for Kids?
Here is a true story. Distraught, Stanley’s parents brought him in for an evaluation. The posture screening that Dr. Cosmas Leigh performed showed that Stanley’s neck was much farther forward than it should be. Also, it was not developing the proper curve due to excessive phone use. This is now being called “Tech Neck” because so many kids are developing this problem due to electronic use. The further forward the head is, the more pressure put on the spine. This is called “Weight of Strain”. At far angles forward the head can put 60 lbs. of pressure on the child’s developing body. This reverses the natural curve of the neck and results in a “hump”. If not corrected early, long-term neck pain and a humped appearance will persist. Stanley agreed that his neck often hurt him and he sometimes got headaches.
Can Tech Neck Be Reversed?
Tech Neck can be reversed by specific spinal adjustments applied by a highly trained Chiropractor, such as Dr. Cosmas Leigh. Not only is he trained, but Dr. Leigh is also the father of 6 children who LOVE their phones. He can identify the anomalies being created by Tech Neck and then gently reversing the curve angle. The computerize postural analysis is crucial in being able to see for yourself how much texting and phone use are affecting your spine and health. Stanley felt better immediately after one treatment and his mom could see the curve changing on the digital postural analysis over time. Now Stanley comes in monthly as prevention and he is feeling great.