If you spend too much time hunched over your smartphone or laptop, you might be prone to developing ‘tech neck’.
Also known as forward head syndrome, the painful condition is a result of the neck losing its natural curve, triggering a psychological imbalance.
Those impacted suffer pain in the upper back and shoulders, while feeling constantly tired and sluggish. It can also lead to respiratory problems and even panic attacks. Doctors say the condition makes the head feels a full 10-pounds heavier than normal.
Chiropractors say they’re seeing a considerable uptick in the condition among younger people as we become more and more reliant on smart devices.
In an in-depth New York Post report one doctor describes the condition as an “epidemic”, saying the posture problem was previously common among professionals like dentists and those who spend years on years behind desks
“Now, 20-year-olds have the spine health of a 30- or 40-year-old. It’s an epidemic,” says New York chiropractor Dr. Christian Kang.
Dr. Brian Wallace, another chiropractor from New Jersey told the Post: “We’re seeing it in younger and younger children because they’re getting their phones at a younger age. It’s one of the most common things we see.”
More common among women?
Young women are more susceptible to the condition according due to lower muscle density in the upper body, another doctor says.
Sania Khiljee, a blogger and businesswoman explained: “I was literally looking down at my phone and laptop for hours every single day. Two of my discs got herniated and it pushed into nerves and then the muscles in my shoulders got really hard.
“It’s hard to explain, but my neck couldn’t support the weight of my head. I had no mobility,” she added. “My bed was too soft, so I slept on the floor for months.”
The Post article also features a host of exercises to help combat symptoms if you’re starting to get a little worried about it. Exercises like yoga and pilates are also recommended.
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