Looking down at your phone for hours each day strains your neck and upper back. All you have to do is:

  • change your posture to keep your head directly above your shoulders and
  • start holding your phone at eye level whilst also keeping your arms supported… these are critical points to remember

Below are more tips on how you can correct your posture, and for those who have children, get them into those good habits early!

Head tilting leads to “Tech Neck”

The more that your head is tilted forward, the ligaments and muscles in your neck and upper back work harder to support its weight. The average head weighs 10-12 pounds and when you tilt your head forward the strain can quadruple that weight; the more forward the tilt is, the heavier the strain feels and the more damage occurs as a consequence – and the more that you repeat the bad posture, the more sensitive you become to the strains; the more deformation occurs; and the stronger the pain starts to feel. Here is what happens:

  • The ligaments throughout the neck and upper back are strained
  • The muscles in the front of the neck and chest become shorter and weaker
  • The muscles holding up your neck from the back are overworked (strained)
  • The nerves in your spine become irritated, causing pain or altered sensation in your arms and hands

Over time, these are the added consequences:

  • Disc compression and herniations
  • Pinched nerves
  • Shortness of breath and respiratory dysfunction
  • Early arthritis
  • Reduction in peristaltic function (the process by which food passes through and out of your digestive tract)

Be mindful of your posture and that of those that you care about (share this article with them) and help prevent the irreversible consequences that can occur, if this is not addressed early!

How to fix “Tech Neck”

Mobile phone (and iPad) usage are one of the primary causes of “Tech Neck”! Remember this first tip: raise your phone so that that the top 1-2 inches of your screen are level with your eyes, that way you don’t have to tilt your head up or down to look at it. The images below are an approximate indicator of good posture – remember this though, the more level your device is with your eyes, the better!

4 Postures that Help Prevent Tech Neck

1. Seated in a Chair with an Armrest

In this position, your back is resting comfortably against a chair and your elbow is propped up on the armrest. Depending on the height of your armrest, you may need to put a pillow under your elbow to raise your phone to the right level.

2. Self-supported elbow when standing

When standing up, use one arm across your rib cage to create a support that you can prop your elbow on. Adjust the height of your support until your phone is right in front of your eyes.

3. Seated with elbow(s) on knee(s)

Lean back against a supporting object and use this posture. Even higher (eye level) that the image below would be better.

4. Seated with elbows on a table or desk

Instead of leaning over your device, prop your elbows on the surface and raise your phone up to eye level, keeping your ears above your shoulders. (Higher than the image below is recommended – remember, device at eye level is the key).

What to do if you already have the aches and pains associated with repeated use of devices, with incorrect posture?

Contact Us as soon as you can so that we can diagnose the main points to work from in order to provide you with fast relief. We are open from Mondays to Saturdays. Central Osteopathy are experts in chronic pain and strain. We will not only adjust you to relieve you from the pain; we will also provide you with ergonomic tips, as well as some exercises to practice in order to provide you with the best body re-alignment and habits in order to minimise and even eliminate these issues. The sooner you tackle them, the better!