In our modern world of mobile devices, a new neck injury has arisen. Referred to as “text neck,” it results from the forward flexion of the cervical spine as you look downwards on your mobile device. As you can see in the above picture, the individual’s neck is bent forward as he or she spends hours per day perusing work emails, apps, games and social media. This places the spine in a position that is unnatural and places undue pressure on the spinal discs as well as the muscles running from your upper back to your neck and skull. Evenutally one or both of these systems will begin to be symptomatic.
As you can see below, the natural position for the neck is straight, with a slight backward curve. This allows the muscles to be in a normal position and the right amount of pressure to be placed on the discs. Think of text neck as essentially a slow motion whiplash. And if left unchecked, it can result in an unnatural loss of curvature in the cervical spine as well as disc bulging and nerve impingement.
Symptoms of text neck include:
- burning sensation in the upper back or base of neck
- pain in the base of the skull
- tingling in the forearms and hands
- headaches and/or nausea
There are ergonomic ways to use your mobile devices and you should be well versed in them.
If your pain is not subsiding, see a professional that understands how to treat text neck. Treatment should include:
- electric stimulation of neck muscles
- myofascial release therapy
- and perhaps even manipulation
Don’t wait for the problem to worsen, get diagnosed and treated and change your habits. You don’t want a serious neck condition in 5 to 10 years!
If you’re in pain, we can help