According to a recent report from The Spine Journal, surgeons are noticing an increase in paitents with text neck – upper back and neck pain related to poor posture when using mobile devices. In fact, young patients who shouldn’t yet have back and neck issues are reporting disk hernias and alignment problems. As mobile device usage is relatively recent, such injuries are unprecedented, and doctors are worried about the effects of prolonged usage on people’s posture as they age.
In order to prevent text neck, the following smart tips should be followed when using a smart phone or mobile device:
- Hold your mobile device at eye level to prevent stress on the neck and spine
- Take frequent breaks to lessen the strain on the neck
- Use a desktop monitor at eye level when working on a laptop for extended periods of time
- Perform stretches throughout the day to improve blood circulation and relieve tension cuased by poor posture. Some examples include rolling the shoulders or tilting the head to the left and right.
- Use web versions of instant messaging services (on your desktop monitor) instead of the mobile version. In doing so, you can avoid looking down at your mobile device and maintain better posture.
Image attribution: Text on the Beach – by Pete – Public Domain