KINGSFORD — Researchers say neck and shoulder pain are more prevalent than ever due in part to the growing use of mobile devices in everyday life. In fact, the increasing prominence of this pain has lead to the coining of a whole new term.
‘Text Neck’ is the modern day term for forward head posturing. It has become an epidemic in recent years because of the regular use of cell phones, tablets and laptops.
People experiencing ‘Text Neck’ can experience symptoms ranging from neck pain to numbness or tingling.
“Our head weights 10-12 pounds when it’s in the neutral position. But once we start looking down, that stress into our spine increases by 10 pounds,” said Ashley Bracco, a physical therapist assistant at U.P. Rehab Services in Kingsford. “Right now [in neutral position] my head is putting 10 pounds of stress onto my spine, but as soon as I look straight down, it’s 60 pounds. So if we think about 60 pounds hanging from our spine, for many hours out of the day, that starts to create wear and tear on our joints and spine.”
If you’re experiencing any of the symptoms, changing habits in your daily routine can keep the pain away. Bracco suggests taking breaks every half-hour from your mobile devices and decreasing cell phone usage.
For more information on ‘Text Neck,’ click here.