Our bodies can sometimes be a bit of a conundrum. With random aches and pains happening all the time as we get older, it’s hard to tell what exactly is causing all of our bodily discomfort. Our bodies are kind of like a puzzle, and when one thing shift out of place, it could cause a chain reaction until a completely different area of the body is suffering from a hurt that was initially caused by an innocent little knock. So it’s very important that we are aware of how we treat our body, particularly when it comes to how we are contorting it out of habit.
It might not seem like much, but we all have a particular way we move our body as we text. For most people, this includes a lot of hunching over and looking down at our screens. Humans are supposed to stand up straight and hold their heads up, and every incremental degree we look down increases the pressure and strain we put on our cervical spine, the area of the spine right above our shoulders. It’s been suggested that people spend an average of 2 to 4 hours every day looking down at their phones, which adds up to about 700 to 1400 hours a year—that’s a lot of hours of strain we’re putting on our bodies.
These hours spent with bad posture are leading to what doctors are calling text neck—that’s right, it’s gotten so pervasive that there’s a name for it. Text neck manifests itself in chromic headaches, upper back pain, shoulder, pain, and increased curvature of the spine. That’s a lot of pain caused from just sending off a few texts! Some studies even suggest that text neck can lead to arthritis and decreased lung capacity too.
So how do we get rid of, or even prevent, text neck? You need to be super aware of your posture. Instead of holding your phone down close to your lap, bring your phone up to eye level. Your head should be facing forward, with your ears in line with your shoulders and your shoulder blades should be retracted. So get into the habit of changing your texting position before it’s too late!