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Health and Wellness Newsletter

Text Neck: It's a Real Pain in the Neck

Text neck
3 Ways to Avoid Text Neck

You are most at risk of developing text neck if you constantly keep your head down when you use your phone, laptop, tablet or other device. Minimize pain and damage to your back or neck with these tips.

Raise Your Head

Keep your phone at eye level as much as possible. Maintaining a good head position will help you avoid the painful symptoms of text neck. It's just as important to avoid looking down at laptops and tablets. Using these devices on stands and lap desks will help raise them to an acceptable level.

Take a Break

At least every 15 minutes, raise your head and take a break from your screen. Get up and take a short stroll before you return to your phone or screen.

Stretch It Out

Do a few stretches during your break. Arch your back and gently tilt your head side to side and up and down. Your chiropractor can teach you a few exercises that will help strengthen your neck and back muscles. Strengthening those muscles improves your posture and reduces your risk of muscle strain.

Do you have frequent neck, shoulder or back pain? You may have a recently identified condition called "text neck." The repetitive strain injury occurs when you spend considerable time looking down at your phone. Since 72 percent of Americans own smartphones, according to Pew Research Center, it's likely to affect many of us at some point if we do not change the way we use our phones.

What Causes Text Neck?

Your neck is designed to support the weight of your head in an upright position. Dropping your head increases the amount of pressure placed on the vertebrae in your neck and also strains muscles in your neck, shoulders, and back.

When you hold your head at a 60 degree angle, like when you look down at your phone, it's as if you suddenly added another 50 pounds of weight to your head. Because your neck was not designed to support so much weight, permanent damage eventually can occur. If you spend a lot of time texting, playing games or surfing the Internet on your phone, the curvature of your neck may even be permanently affected. Although changes in the neck are often inevitable due to aging, chiropractors are starting to see young patients with serious wear and tear due to texting.

What Are the Symptoms of Text Neck?

Symptoms of text neck include:

  • Neck, shoulder, back, arm, and hand pain
  • Headache
  • Spasms in the neck, shoulder and back
  • Numbness and tingling
  • A change in posture
  • Tight shoulder and neck muscles

What Are the Long-Term Effects of Text Neck?

A variety of painful conditions can occur when you continually put too much stress on your neck, such as:

  • Disc Problems. Your discs cushion the vertebrae in your spinal column. Although they're designed to be flexible, they are not meant to withstand the strong forces that occur when you constantly keep your head lowered. Over time, you may begin to experience cracked, slipped or herniated discs.
  • Pinched Nerves. Using bad posture when you text can also increase your risk of a pinched nerve. The problem occurs when bone or tissue presses on a nerve.
  • Arthritis. Wear and tear on your vertebrae can lead to early arthritis.
  • Bone Spurs. Bone spurs can develop due to the stress on your spinal column and can cause pinched nerves.
  • Hunchback. Formally called kyphosis, the condition causes your back to become rounded due to a curvature of the spine.

Poor head position may also lead to other health problems. It's harder for your lungs to expand completely when you sit in a hunched position. When you take in less air, your heart has to work harder to ensure that enough oxygen reaches every part of your body via your bloodstream.

Who Is at Risk?

Anyone who spends time texting or using a smartphone can suffer from text neck. Your risk of developing painful back and neck symptoms may be higher if you work in a job that requires you to lower your head and you spend much of your free time using your phone to text, surf or play games.

If you have developed any of the symptoms of text neck, give us a call. Through spinal adjustments and other chiropractic techniques, we can address spinal alignment issues, improve muscle balance and relieve your symptoms.

Sources:

Surgical Technology International: Assessment of Stresses in the Cervical Spine Caused by Position and Posture of the Head

https://cbsminnesota.files.wordpress.com/2014/11/spine-study.pdf

Los Angeles Times: Teen's Compulsive Texting Can Cause Neck Injury, Experts Warn, 4/24/16

http://www.latimes.com/health/la-he-text-neck-20150404-story.html

Spine-health: A Modern Spine Ailment: Text Neck, 11/6/15

http://www.spine-health.com/blog/modern-spine-ailment-text-neck

Spine-health: How to Avoid Text Neck Overuse Syndrome

http://www.spine-health.com/conditions/neck-pain/how-avoid-text-neck-overuse-syndrome

NBC News: Could Text Neck Be the New Arthritis?, 1/12/16

http://www.nbcnews.com/news/nbcblk/essay-could-text-neck-be-new-arthritis-n494856

Cleveland Clinic: Text Neck: Is Smartphone Use Causing Your Neck Pain, 3/24/15

https://health.clevelandclinic.org/2015/03/text-neck-is-smartphone-use-causing-your-neck-pain/

Pew Research Center: Smartphone Ownership and Internet Usage Continues to Climb in Emerging Economies

http://www.pewglobal.org/2016/02/22/smartphone-ownership-and-internet-usage-continues-to-climb-in-emerging-economies/


Nutritional Counseling


 

Nutritional counseling is a type of assessment made which analyzes various health needs in regard to diet and exercise. A nutritional counselor helps people to set achievable health goals and teaches various ways of maintaining these goals throughout their lifetime. Nutrition is an important part of a healthy lifestyle. Without proper nutrition, one does not have enough energy to make it through the day.
This type of counseling assists all ages, ranging from pregnant women, to vegetarians, to the elderly and people with different medical complications. Those who may benefit include those with:
Diabetes; Osteoporosis; Poor nutrition and eating patterns; Eating disorders (some of which may require eating disorder treatment); Digestive complications; HIV; Cancer; Hypertension; Nausea; Nutritional questions; Allergies; Organ problems; Obesity; Hypoglycemia; Menopause; Fitness goals; Heart diseases

Spinal Decompression (IDD Therapy)

The Accu-SPINA is one of the most scientifically advanced back pain treatment systems available today. Designed to non-surgically relieve disc pressure, this device employs force delivery techniques which mimic physical therapy approaches to spinal dysfunction. The Accu-SPINA™ system has the ability to target specific segments of the lumbar spine for treatment. Over the course of a full treatment regimen, this system enables the treating specialist to distract the intervertebral space by a distance of 5 to 7 millimeters, thus significantly decreasing pressure inside the disc.
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Spinal Decompression (IDD Therapy) Testimonials
"I endured neck pain for so long, due to two herniated discs. I could not find a comfortable position. My sleep was constantly disturbed. After the treatment, I was back to normal and pain free. I can now sleep through the night without pain. Thank You!" - P.R.
"I had sever pain down my right leg and around the knee area. I'm 62 and I felt like I was 85! Since starting IDD therapy, there has been steady improvement. I was pain free after all of my treatments! I strongly recommend this therapy for anyone with bulging discs and leg pain." - A.E.
Call us now at 908-522-8989 for a complimentary consultation to learn more about the benefits of IDD therapy and how it can help you.


Physical Therapy

Our Physical Therapists are Licensed Certified Professionals with extensive knowledge and training in anatomy, physiology and the biomechanics of the body. Physical therapy is a branch of rehabilitative health that uses forms of exercise and equipment which are specifically designed to assist people to either regain or improve their physical abilities. Physical therapy helps to restore a person's best ability to function through minimizing physical impairment, disability-related congenital and acquired conditions, and functional limitations.
The type of physical therapy treatment a person receives is dependent upon their condition. Complete physical therapy treatment can include some different elements. Pain reduction might include the use of ice, heat, relaxation, massage, joint mobilization, stretches, or the use of electrical stimulation or ultrasound.

Acupuncture

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We have on staff Jeff Aleski, Board Certified Acupuncturist who specializes in back pain, tendonitis, carpal tunnel, pain management, irritable bowl syndrome, infertility, face lift rejuvenation, sinus pain and more. The goal of this dynamic and integrated 5,000 year old health care system is to activate the natural, self-healing abilities of the body. Acupuncture is safe, natural, drug-free and effective.
Ten key benefits of acupuncture include:
Improved Health and Quality of Life; Stress Reduction; Pain Reduction; Improved and Faster Recovery from Injury, Illness and Surgery; Emotional Balance; Respiratory Health; Insomnia Relief; Strengthening Your; Immune System; Premenstrual (PMS) and Menopausal Symptom Relief; Reduction of Side Effects of Chemo and Radiation Therapies

We hope to see you soon. Remember, for a better tomorrow, do something about it today!
Do not forget to stop by for a spinal checkup and an adjustment.
Please remember that everyone needs to be free from pain so bring your friends and loved ones for a spinal checkup.