A relatively recent problem plaguing spines across the world is the increasing prevalence of what’s known as “tech neck” or, some refer to it as “text neck.” Whichever catchy buzzword terminology you prefer, experiencing the symptoms of this condition is definitely not as much fun as its nomenclature. The condition itself is a result of our increased time looking downward, with our necks bent forward to support our heads as we stare downwards at our smart phones, tablets, and computers for prolonged periods of time. As a result of this unnatural head and neck positioning, many sufferers end up experiencing severe cervical neck pain, shoulder discomfort, abnormal spinal curvature, and chronic headaches. The worst part is that many people don’t even realize that they are doing it!
Symptoms of “Tech Neck”
For every inch forward you bend your head forward, you are putting up to 10 pounds of pressure on your neck and spine! This can result in a hunched-over thoracic curve and a host of other troubling symptoms. This hunchback slouching of the thoracic curve is called Cervical kyphosis, which is the medical term for “tech neck,” and it can be a very painful condition, compounded by the fact that we continue to use this posture while we use our devices. Besides cervical kyphosis, tech neck can display symptoms such as:
Neck Pain: Localized pain and aching can be felt along back of the neck or at the base of the head
Stiffness: Stress and inflammation of neck muscles and connective tissues can lead to tissues hardening or stiffening and limited rotation in the neck
Shoulder Pain & Tension: Pain and tension in the neck can quickly extend to the supportive muscles and connective tissues of the shoulder
Numbness or Tingling in Arms or Hand: When tech neck becomes especially extreme, nerves in the cervical spine can become compressed and even pinched. This can lead to localized neck pain, but can also cause pain, tingling, or numbness in the arms and hands.
Abnormal Curvature: If left unchecked, the forward bending to look at our screens can become permanent. An irreversible hunch-backed appearance can develop.
We can help!
Although for many workers in this modern technological era, using devices is basically unavoidable, and neck strain can seem inevitable, however, there are treatment options and exercise regimens that you can use to avoid and counteract the symptoms of tech neck. Comprehensive Spine Pain Center can help you combat neck strain and tech neck pain by introducing techniques and posture exercises that counteract the strain of having your head forward all day, along with a treatment plan that doesn’t necessarily involve any invasive surgeries, such as epidural injections for neck pain, which will help eliminate neck discomfort.
If you think you are experiencing the symptoms of neck pain, or your daily routine involves having your head in a posture that isn’t ideal for your neck and spine, reach out to Comprehensive Spine Pain Center today and schedule your appointment. We can have you feeling great again in no time!