The Dangers of Tech Neck

Unfortunately, bending your head forward for too long can lead to tech neck.

Do you look at your phone, tablet, or computer for hours every day? Of course, you do. We all do. The average person spends almost 11 hours a day looking at a screen, whether it’s their phone, tablet, laptop, or TV! That’s a lot of media consumption — and a lot of neck, back, and eye strain. 

In most of those cases, our head is bent down. Not only does it make us antisocial, but it also makes us prone to tech neck.

Thankfully, here at Osteopathic Wellness Center, Dr. Johnston offers a variety of treatments to help you find relief from the symptoms of tech neck. Learn more about this common condition, how you can avoid it, and if necessary, how to treat it.

What is tech neck?

Tech neck, which is also sometimes called text neck, refers to the soreness, muscle spasms, pain, and stiffness in our neck, back, and shoulders that results from bending our head forward for so many hours a day. Consider this: our head weighs between 10 to 12 pounds. However, the weight of our noggin increases as it tilts forward. In fact, research suggests that it can increase up to 60 pounds.

The more you tilt your head forward, the more the muscles in the back of your neck have to work hard to support it. With most people spending several hours a day looking down at their device, it’s likely that everyone experiences tech neck at some point.

What are the dangers of tech neck?

At first, tech neck results in soreness and some pain. As time goes on, the tightening or strain of your neck muscles can make it difficult for you to raise your head at all.

Additionally, as your muscles tighten up, they put more pressure on the discs, which are gel-like cushions between your vertebrae. Over time, this pressure can cause the discs to wear out, which can result in a ruptured or bulging disc. Neck pain and tight muscles can also lead to tension headaches and migraines.

How to prevent and treat tech neck

There are some simple things you can do to improve your posture and prevent your neck from tilting forward so much. For one, you can be sure to move your mobile device or tablet up closer to your face, so you don’t have to bend down to read it. 

Other strategies include:

There are also various treatments for tech neck, including:

For more information on how to get relief from tech neck, call the Osteopathic Wellness Center, or make an appointment online.

 

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