Tex­ting Be­com­ing a Pain in the Neck

Wellness Update - - Contents -

up­per back in ab­nor­mal po­si­tions for a long pe­riod of time; enough that other peo­ple coined the phrase ‘text neck,’ which is essen­tially re­fer­ring to pos­tural pain,” said Chris Cor­nett, M.D., or­thopaedic sur­geon and spine spe­cial­ist at UNMC’s Depart­ment of Or­thopaedic Surgery and Re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion. The term, text neck, was first coined by a chi­ro­prac­tor in Florida. It’s de­fined as overuse syn­drome in­volv­ing the head, neck and shoul­ders, usu­ally re­sult­ing from ex­ces­sive strain on the spine from look­ing in a down­ward po­si­tion at hand held de­vices such as cell phones, mp3 play­ers, e-read­ers and com­puter tablets. “When you hold your body in an ab­nor­mal po­si­tion, it can in­crease stress on the mus­cles, cause fa­tigue, mus­cle spasms and even stress headaches,” Dr. Cor­nett said. “With ev­ery de­gree of mo­tion to the front or side that you move your head, the stress on your neck is mag­ni­fied be­yond just the weight of the head.” Over time, as tech­nol­ogy use con­tin­ues to ex­pand, more peo­ple will ex­pe­ri­ence this kind of dis­com­fort and in­juries from text neck,” he said. How­ever, Dr. Cor­nett sug­gested a few ways to help al­le­vi­ate or avoid text neck be­com­ing a pain in your neck.

• Mod­ify the po­si­tion of the de­vice

In­stead of hav­ing the de­vice in your lap or caus­ing you to lean your head down, find a way to hold the de­vice at a neu­tral, eye level.

• Take breaks

Be aware that you’re us­ing th­ese tech­nol­ogy de­vices through­out the day and force your­self to take a break and to change or al­ter your po­si­tion.

• Phys­i­cal fit­ness

Hav­ing a strong, flex­i­ble back and neck will help you deal with ab­nor­mal stresses and re­duce mus­cu­loskele­tal is­sues. in­creases by 75 per­cent for in­di­vid­u­als who have been ex­posed to UV ra­di­a­tion from in­door tan­ning and the risk in­creases with each use and 2.3 mil­lion teens tan in­doors in the United States an­nu­ally,” said Dr. Dirk M. El­ston, MD, FAAD, pres­i­dent of the AADA. “There­fore, re­strict­ing teens’ ac­cess to in­door tan­ning is crit­i­cal to pre­vent­ing skin can­cer. As med­i­cal doc­tors who di­ag­nose and treat skin can­cer, der­ma­tol­o­gists are com­mit­ted to re­duc­ing its in­ci­dence and sav­ing lives. We will con­tinue to com­mu­ni­cate to the FDA the need for stricter reg­u­la­tions on the use and sale of in­door tan­ning de­vices for mi­nors un­der the age of 18.”

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