Text Neck: What a Pain!

Ah, text neck- that posture most of us hold while using a mobile device (i.e. neck bent downward, torso bent over and shoulders rounded). It’s such a common posture that we usually aren’t even aware of it until we begin to feel it in our necks. Our mobile devices aren’t going anywhere anytime soon, so what can we do to alleviate pain and/or postural issues that can result from text neck? Here are a few tips:

1. Reduce the need to look down at your mobile device in order to use it. This can be done by:
- Using hands-free technologies such as your device’s built-in (or downloadable) speech-to-text function to replace manual texting and web surfing.
- Sitting down (in an upright posture) and placing your device on a stand or flat surface that will raise its screen to your seated eye level.

2. Stretch it out. You don’t have to wait until you feel pain to start a stretching routine. In fact, you don’t even need a routine! Take 5-10 minutes out of your day to stretch your neck and cervical-trapezius muscles (the muscles where your neck and shoulders connect) or do a few yoga poses that gently stretch your neck and shoulders. If you’re unsure about which stretching exercises or yoga poses would be safest or most beneficial for you, consult a chiropractor or doctor who’s familiar with your body and its specific needs.

3. Hold your head high! If you absolutely have to use your hands while using your device then sit or stand with your head held upright and hold your screen up to your eye level. It helps if you’re stationary while doing this (walking with your phone in front of your face is not recommended). It might feel a little strange at first to hold your device up so high, but your neck will ultimately thank you for it!