Excessive Mobile Usage Causes a New Ailment Called ‘Text Neck’

Mobile phone users who use their cell phone excessively suffer from a conditions called “text neck” caused by flexing the neck for extended periods of time. It can be a forerunner of permanent arthritic damage if it goes without treatment. It is on the rise due to the amount of time people spend hunched over their mobile phone and tablet computer screens, chiropractors have warned.

Cases of the repetitive strain injury are on the rise as smart phones and tablet computers such as the iPad become increasingly popular, experts said.

In severe cases the muscles can eventually adapt to fit the flexed position, making it painful to straighten the neck out properly.

One chiropractor said her company had treated thousands of patients for the condition, which can also result in headaches and shoulder, arm and wrist pain.

[advt]Rachael Lancaster, of Freedom Back Clinics in Leeds, said: Text neck is caused by the neck being flexed for a prolonged period of time. The condition occurs because the joints and tissue in the neck are not built to withstand being flexed for long periods, and spending hours peering down at a screen puts them under too much stress, she added.

The condition can be avoided by taking regular screen breaks, and looking straight ahead while tucking the chin back towards the neck every few minutes.

Rotating the shoulders with your arms by your sides, sitting up straight while texting and holding the phone a little higher can also help maintain a healthy posture.
Tim Hutchful, of the British Chiropractic Association, said doctors were seeing a rising number of patients with similar neck problems but that getting regular exercise could help ward of symptoms.

The average human head weighs between 10lb and 12lb (4.5kg to 5.5kg), and flexing the neck makes it harder to support like carrying a similar weight at arm’s length.
Children are most at risk because their heads are larger in relation to their body size than adults, and women with slender necks should also take extra care to maintain a good posture.

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