Is your phone giving you text neck?

Hunching over cellphones, laptops, tablets and laptops may lead to a condition now being termed 'text neck'.

Chiropractor, Dr Robert Delgado explains what it's all about.

It's a term coined by the chiropractic profession in the United States, because of increased numbers of people coming in with neck injuries they are attributing to the constant forward inflection of the head when we are using our smart phones and tablet devices.

Dr Robert Delgado, Chiropractor

Delgado explains the physics involved. When you tilt your head forward at 60 degrees, as we do when we are looking down at our phones or tablets, you increase the force on your neck 15 times.

So if you put that together with the amount of time we spend on our phones - on social media, email, text messages - it becomes quite a scary stressor.

Dr Robert Delgado, Chiropractor

So just how does this affect our health?

The key thing to understand is the relationship your spine has to your nervous system. They are completely linked together so if you affect one, you affect the other.

Dr Robert Delgado, Chiropractor

Putting your spine in such a position that is increasing strain on the joints, muscles and tissues, is not only therefore going to have a mechanical effect on the spine. It is also going to have a neurological effect.

It will literally have an affect on your brain. And your brain runs your body.

Dr Robert Delgado, Chiropractor

Simply put, the brain gets charged by healthy movement, like when you exercise.

That's why when we exercise we generally feel good afterwards, and if we sit at a desk all day, we feel lethargic.

Dr Robert Delgado, Chiropractor

A misaligned spine will result in less brain energy, and then the body just doesn't function as well.

Research now links postural misalignment with hormonal issues, metabolism issues, emotional well being and unity.

Dr Robert Delgado, Chiropractor

Realistically most people will not stop texting, so what should we do?

1. Become aware if it and be as proactive as possible. Change your position and take as many breaks as possible.

  1. Spine health awareness - look after your spine as you do your teeth, says Delgado. Keep your spine mobile and strong.

  2. Seek health professionals to help maintain spine health.

Ironically the issue of children's weighty backpacks is also an issue up for discussion with suggestions that packs should be no more than 10 - 15% of the child's body weight. But a proposed solution is too replace heavy book bags with a tablet.

But without proper education, kids will end up with lighter backpacks, but unhealthy posture from the tablets.

Dr Robert Delgado, Chiropractor

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