This condition is known as text neck, smartphone neck, Samsung neck and iPhone neck. NB This is not an official medical diagnosis. All of these names refer to neck pain that is a result of prolonged use of a mobile phone, tablet or similar portable electronic device.
The use of small electronic devices usually means that you spend a lot of time tilting your head forward and down.
People are so focused on these devices that they end up keeping their necks and backs in an abnormal position for a long time to the point where the term text neck was coined. Text neck mainly refers to pain that is caused by the prolonged unhealthy neck posture that is a direct cause of smart phones use.
Keeping the body in an abnormal position can lead to muscle tension, fatigue, muscle cramps, and even headaches.
The long term risks of Prolonged incorrect postures on the neck
A study by Lee and colleagues, published in the October 2014 issue of the journal Ergonomics, showed that repeated or prolonged bending of the head when using a smartphone is a risk factor for neck pain. Eighteen people participated in the survey and completed three tasks from their smartphones: Correspondence, visualization and video visualization. The study was conducted by study participants. Participants did these exercises sitting and standing.
The study demonstrated not only that head flexion is associated with intensive use of the smartphone as a risk factor for neck pain, but also that text messaging may contribute more to the neck pain associated with these devices use. In the office, it was texting in a seated position that caused the most head tilting.
Symptoms of text neck
The possible symptoms of the iPhone neck are headaches, neck pain, shoulder and nerve pain, numbness, tingling and burning in one or both hands.
In 2012, a survey of 18 people was conducted at Google headquarters in Mountain view, California. The research also examined the use of tablets to determine the extent to which the head bends as a result of email retrieval and web browsing. The study also measured head flexion when watching movies sitting on a tablet.
The researchers found that participants who used a tablet without a table but rather on their laps had strong head flexion. Those who used a table had less head flexion and as a result less neck pain.
How to Avoid and Prevent Text Neck
The best strategy to reduce the impact of mobile devices on the neck is probably to increase the angle of vision. There are some things to try. You can place the tablet on a stand or table. If you have to use it on your knees, don’t forget to put it on top of a pillow
Lifting the tray with your hand can reduce the tilt of your head but his position is likely to cause the forearm muscles to tense up, which can lead to other types of discomfort and pain.
To protect your neck consider neck strengthening exercises and regular breaks from these devices. You may also consider participating in a postural exercise program.