NEW YORK, New York- Is your smartphone giving you “a pain in the neck?”
Research from New York Spine Surgery and Rehabilitation in New York City, found the hours you spend slumped over your phone are likely to give you neck and back pain.
Doctors say our heads weigh about 10 to 12 pounds and when we bend our necks down; gravity pulls on our noggin and increases the pressure on our upper spine.
A slight bend of 15 degrees adds 27 pounds of pressure to your spine. 30 degrees adds 40 pounds. 45 degrees adds nearly 50 pounds and 60 degrees, which is how most of us read our smartphones, adds 60 pounds of force. That’s about the same weight as 4 bowling balls. "That extra force can lead to increased degeneration and wear and tear on the disks in your spine and potentially lead to more pain and maybe even surgery later on" says Dr. Rex Marco of the UT Health Medical School.
Try to train yourself to hold your phone up to reduce your head tilt. Dr Marco says the best thing that he's found to eliminate neck pain is to "remember to try to stay in good posture. The easiest way to do that is to take a deep breath, elevate your chest and that naturally just brings your ears in line with your shoulders. So if your ears are in line with your shoulders, then that helps take some of the stress off of your spine."
If you listen to the doc, you’ll avoid pain and the only bowling balls you’ll deal with will be at a bowling alley.