Text neck or phone neck
The idea of phone neck or text neck has been tweeted, shared, posted and ‘youtubed’. (Is that the right way to say that?) This is a myth. Prior to the smart phone we did not say that we had book neck. That was the smart phone of the past. The reality is that neck issues while doing a sustained activity such as looking at your phone is a sign that you have a neck problem. This means you are probably having some other issues finding a pillow or self-manipulating and stretching your neck. You have a prior neck problem with loss of joint mobility and abnormal muscle tension and the activity that you are doing is exacerbating your neck problem, not causing it.
There is definitely no such thing as a pillow or bed neck!
Poor Posture = Pain
Everyone has different body shapes and sizes and each have their unique abilities. A thicker rib cage allows you to carry more weight. A thinner frame can potentially be more flexible. Vive la difference! Your body shape is most likely something you inherited. Similar postures and body shapes are seen from generation to generation.
When people get whole body x-rays done everyone typically is told that they are 'out of place' or that they have a problem. BUT you can have changes on imaging like x-ray and MRI and be completely fine. No pain and normal function and activity. There is a very poor correlation between any imaging and pain or dysfunction.
Things to look for…
If there is pain then there is a problem
Asymmetry is a bigger predictor of a potential problem
Sustained, less efficient postures will cause symptoms over time
Signs of a posture problem
Self-manipulation to your spine each day
Head tilt. Your head is not on straight
Back tension, you can see your back muscles sticking out
One shoulder is more rounded than the other
Symptoms of a posture problem
Pain to the front of the shoulder, especially with reaching across your body
Your breath does not feel as full
Aching or pain between the shoulders and upper back
The feeling that you need to stretch and straighten up during the day
You just don’t look as upright
Posture and your teenager
There are two areas that I see related to posture that affect our kids in a negative way. One is an overloaded or poor fitting backpack and the other is too much ‘screen time’ and lack of outdoor physical activity. A backpack can assist our posture by making our shoulders work while inhibiting our chest muscles if used properly.