Remember Toasted Leg Syndrome? That was rough! Our thighs are still mottled! Or what about Blackberry Thumb, whatever that is? Our Blackberry thumb still hurts! Or even old-school problems like carpal tunnel and scurvy? Well, forget about all that. The global scourge on the rise is Text Neck (™!), a truly horrifying deformity caused by bad posture over your computer and wireless devices. It may be happening to you! Right now! Ouch!
Doctors and chiropractors say people hunched over their mobile gadgets are developing neck strain, headaches and pain in the shoulders and, sometimes, in arms and hands. What’s more, all that curving of the body to text, type, watch videos and play games could cause debilitating pain that lasts a lifetime, they warn.
“This is a global epidemic,” says Dean L. Fishman, a chiropractor who practices at the Text Neck Institute in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. He trademarked Text Neck and changed the name of his practice after noticing 90 percent of his patients coming in with the same complaint. His youngest patient is a 3-year-old, who’s in love with playing games on an electronic device.
“It’s starting younger and younger. There are more than six billion phones connected, and that’s not counting the Kindles, iPads, tablets and all these devices we rely on daily,” Fishman says. “Go outside, to a restaurant, the supermarket, a gym, the airport and notice the posture of almost everyone around you. You will see this everywhere, and now multiply that by every city in the world.”
Previously text neck was called “forward head posture,” but clearly Text Neck is better in terms of brand recognition. The question, of course, is what we will call it when texting is something our grandparents used to do.
Actual tips on how to prevent text neck:
Look straight ahead while holding your arms out, every now and again! (Ignore stares)
Hold your head back, instead of forward!
Call people on the actual phone!
Use Fishman’s Android app, “Text Neck, which gives users a green light when they are properly holding their phones and a red light when they are holding their heads down and rounding their shoulders. The application also can send reports to parents who can monitor their children’s posture while using their phones.”
We are so weird now.