Text neck is the term used to describe the neck pain and damage sustained from looking down at your cell phone, tablet or other devices too frequently and for too long. This injury it’s becoming more common as more people hunch over smartphones and it’s occurring even in adolescents.
The disorder is associated with chronic headaches and shoulder/neck pain, and also increased curvature in the spine — especially in kids.
But how can this cause so much hurt?
Basically, the repetitive posture of bending your neck to look down changes the natural curve of your neck, causing tear and wear on the structures of the neck. Researchers have shown that for every inch you drop your head forward, you double the load on the neck muscles. This position also restricts your lungs ability to expand.
Here’s a few tricks to avoid this kind of pain:
1- Straighten up: if you’re standing correct, you should be able to draw a vertical line from ear to shoulder.
2- Look forward: when possible, raise the device to your eyes level.
3- Arch back: specific stretches and movements with shoulders and neck can alleviate the stress and muscle pain. One good example is the “neck retraction”: pull your head back keeping jaw and eyes level.