Our neck, or cervical spine to give it its proper name, is made up of seven bones known as vertebrae. Each has a disc in-between and a nerve coming out. It is an incredibly well engineered set of bones, nerves, muscles, ligaments and tendons. Your neck protects your spinal cord which sends messages from your brain to control all aspects of your body through the central nervous system.
One of the necks's many jobs is to support the weight of your head which can be up to 6 kilos, the weight of a bowling ball! Our necks are perfectly designed to carry this weight but the problems come when our head posture moves forward, commonly referred to as text neck or to give it its medical name, anterior head carriage.
When we are looking forward at our phone our neck is commonly at an angle of 45-60 degrees which places a staggering 27 kilos of force on our neck.
To show yourself this try holding a bag of flour in your hand with your wrist straight up and then move your wrist into flexion (bend it forward) and notice how much heavier it feels.
This increase in load unfortunately causes our neck joints to become inflamed and our muscles to fatigue; when this happens, we can experience pain, pins and needles, headaches and dizziness.
One of the questions we must ask ourselves when we hurt our back or neck is “why did that happen?” or “what did I do”? Chiropractic is amazing at getting things working properly again but we often have to look for the root cause as well.
So next time you are sending a text remember to bring your phone up to eye level rather than looking down towards the ground.