Being attached to a smartphone and looking down for a long can cause phone neck pain. We are all constantly connected to our family, friends, work, etc. When we keep our head down, shoulders hunched forward, neck straining from the uncomfortable angle for a long time a neck injury can develop. This has to do with knowing how to maintain proper posture while using a smartphone.
Most of us know this syndrome as tech neck, text neck, and is caused by straining the neck too far down and forward while talking/texting, etc. Holding this position for too long will cause neck muscle strain and pain. This also occurs with handheld devices with users hunching their shoulders forward. The awkward neck angel and rounded shoulders strain the entire upper body.
Phone Neck Pain Stretches/Tips
Here are a few tips along with some light stretches/exercises to keep the neck muscles flexible and loose.
Try to bring the phone to eye level.
Check around and look up from the screen every few minutes so as not to remain in a downward position.
Move the chin towards the chest, and hold for 5 seconds as there will be a comfortable stretch from the neck to the base of the skull to the mid-back. Try doing a few up to 10 times until you feel thoroughly stretched.
Tilt the head to the right, bringing the ear close to the shoulder. Use your hand to pull your head farther into the stretch if possible. Hold for 20 seconds. Bring the head back to the center, and tilt to the left, and hold for 20 seconds. Repeat this motion 3-5 times on each side.
Rotate the chin towards the right shoulder and hold for 20 seconds. Use your hand to push your head farther into the stretch if possible. Bring the head back to the center, and rotate to the left, and hold for 20 seconds. Repeat this motion 3-5 times on each side.
Neck pain can turn into a full injury or condition if an individual continues with this form of very poor posture. Taking care of our bodies needs to be a priority. Make proper posture a habit and it will help prevent neck and back pain from developing. This along with related posture and biomechanical issues. Proper posture means the head is upright, the ears are in line with the shoulders, and the shoulder blades are down.
Neck Pain Chiropractic Care
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Sciatica is not only caused by a spinal injury, although this is the primary cause, sciatica can also surprisingly be caused by your clothes and shoes. Sciatica is defined as symptoms that include back, leg, and foot pain caused by the compression of the sciatic nerve. Other symptoms can include shootingelectrical rays of pain, weakness, and numbness from your low back all the way down your legs into your feet.
Because of the intensity, many assume it has to be something serious like a work/car accident, sports injury or severe trauma. All of this can lead to sciatica, but there are also everyday things that we do daily that can also cause it. Here are some lesser-known ways of developing sciatica.
Items in Your Back Pocket
Many of us put our phones or wallets into our back pockets. When we carry these items in our pocket and then sit down on them, this can become a gradual trigger to sciatica. When we sit with these items begin to irritate the piriformis muscle. The sciatic nerve is right underneath this muscle and can get compressed. This cause has not been defined by the medical community, but a few names floating around include (back-pocket sciatica and cell-phone sciatica).
Wearing High Heels
High heels push your weight forward and so your body wanting to remain upright responds by flexing the hips to keep you straight. The risk of sciatica happens when this flexing at the hips stretches the hamstrings that can irritate the sciatic nerve running alongside the hamstrings. And besides sciatica high heels can cause a bevy of other spinal problems.
Wearing Tight Jeans and Underwear
Overly tight-fitting pants and underwear might look and feel great, however, they can also contribute to sciatic nerve pain. Wearing tight clothing is not bad but realize that wearing this type of clothing every day will start to compress the muscles, ligaments, and nerves. Mix it up with clothing that allows you to move freely. If your clothing cuts off circulation absolutely do not wear it. And when it comes to tight pants, change postures and don’t stay in the same position for too long, especially sitting.
Research has found an association between being overweight and having sciatica.�Excess body weight puts stress on your spine. This added pressure combined with sedentarism can cause spinal disorders that include sciatica. Being able to maintain a healthy weight will greatly reduce your risk of developing sciatica symptoms.
The Impact of Sciatica
Even if just gradual weakness develops down your leg or a sudden burst of pain comes and goes, do not ignore it and make an appointment with your doctor or chiropractor to understand the issue and underlying cause/s and set up a preventative treatment plan before it gets out of hand. There are many sciatica treatments/therapies to reduce or eliminate low back and leg pain. Your doctor/chiropractor will work with you to develop a custom sciatic preventive exercise treatment plan.
Severe *Sciatica”* Pain Relief | El Paso, Tx (2020)
A study cited by the health magazine�Prevention found that sixty percent of sciatica sufferers who failed to get relief from other treatments found their symptoms improved after chiropractic care. Please contact our chiropractic team today to schedule an appointment if you are experiencing symptoms of sciatica. We are ready to help you feel better and get back on your feet again.
Doctors are warning cell phone users to be especially careful when:
Walking around and texting
It is a distraction and one of the leading causes of head and neck injuries.
2,501 reported cases of phone-related head and neck injuries that lead to emergency room visits between January 1998 and December 2017 found in a nationwide database. Injuries in teens and young adults aged 13 to 29 years old were about 40%, in women (55%) and men (45%).
Common Phone Injuries
Common injuries include:
Internal injuries usually happen around the eyes and nose
Possible trauma to the brain
Over 41% of these injuries happened at home and were minor with little or no treatment needed. Around 50% of injuries were a result of distracted driving and 30% from distracted walking.
Any type of phone distraction in and out of the home puts you and others at risk for:
All of which can lead to injuries and other possible consequences (e.g. a busted phone).
More individuals are getting injured because of phone use while moving around and not paying attention to what’s around them.
Children under the age of 13 were at higher risk to suffer a mechanical injury like parents accidentally dropping the phone on their child or children hitting themselves in the face. For example, ninety cases of injuries occurred while playing Pokemon Go.
Spending as little as two to four hours a day hunched over a smartphone is enough to make a serious impact on the body over time. And though two to four hours may not seem like a long time, it isn�t hard to arrive at two hours by adding several 15-minute or half-hour segments together.
For teenagers, specifically, two to four hours on a smartphone has changed as of now teenagers spend around seven to eight hours on their phones. Spending twice as much time on afternoons or the space between classes or lunch. Think about the impact of 1500 plus hours of bad posture throughout the year. There is no surprise that teenagers are at risk.
The lasting impact of text neck and distracted phone use on today�s young people will be costly. Therefore, the public needs to be educated about the risks of distracted phone use and reducing this distracted behavior.
*Neck* Pain Chiropractic Care El Paso, Texas
If you begin noticing pain, spasms, or irritation around the neck, shoulders, or back make an appointment with a professional chiropractor. Explain when the pain occurred, the severity, and the activity that started it. A simple adjustment may be all that is needed to get re-aligned and gain relief from pain caused by overuse. A chiropractor can also help decrease the chances of the injury worsening over time.
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