As a nation, we’re losing the natural curvature in our necks due to technology. Looking down at our phone and sitting at our computer puts excessive pressure on our spine, causing “text neck.” Doctors are treating younger and younger people for this syndrome. Although pain or discomfort may not be felt for years, once the pain starts, it’s often difficult to treat and correct.
The head, which normally weighs around 10 pounds, exerts a force of up to 60 pounds on the neck when it’s tilted forward at a 60-degree angle. This stress can cause new alignment issues in the spine and aggravate pre-existing ones.
Due to the rapid advancement in technology, use of cell phones, televisions, and computers compromises a child’s spine and joints. Being aware of the signs is key to protecting their spine and overall health. Regular adjustments and home exercises recommended by a doctor can help mitigate symptoms of poor posture and “text neck.” The only way to screen for these issues is to take your children for a chiropractic spinal exam and assessment. The nerves of a misaligned spine may become compromised, which will begin diminishing the functionality of organs and tissues.
As parents, we must change how we use our own devices to set an example. Raise your phone to eye level and don’t drop your head! Have your children practice this technique. It may feel awkward and uncomfortable at first, but it limits strain on the shoulders and mid/lower back, helping preserve the natural curvature of the neck.
Children shouldn’t sit for more than an hour at a time. Most children’s classes are short, but unfortunately, there’s not a lot of time in between for them to stretch. Muscles can tighten up after long periods of inactivity, causing muscle spasms and spine misalignments. Staying stagnant can cause joints to stiffen up, decreasing normal movement and causing spinal disks to lose their natural lubrication. Moving around every 30 minutes, when possible, can help keep joints healthy.
Chiropractic care is the most effective way to combat stress caused by modern technology. Prevention and early maintenance are key to maintaining a child’s healthy spine as they continue their development. Through conscious effort, mindful execution, and regular adjustments, you can keep your child’s spine feeling fine for years to come.
As back-to-school time approaches, bring your children in for an exam and adjustment. Cell phone usage, carrying backpacks, and sitting for long periods of time can cause our children’s spinal health to be compromised. Regular chiropractic check-ups can detect issues before they become more serious.
Dr. Ajay Sawhney at Divine Spine has a Chiropractic Doctorate with a Master’s of Science in Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine