Children With Neck Problems: Too Much Time on Devices
52% of kids from 0 to 8 years old spend about 43 minutes a day on these mobile devices
Are your kids complaining about neck pain?
It could be text neck. Text neck is a term that is used to describe the neck pain and damage sustained from looking down at your cell phone, tablet, or other wireless devices too frequently and for too long.
Even I would admit that I’m on the phone a lot: checking emails, following up on trends for work, replying friends, you name it. I’m sure you can relate. In this internet age, there is no escaping it. Kids are generally on devices way too much also, and more so now with the introduction of Pokemon Go!
“The problem is the posture,” Dr. Dean Fishman, a chiropractic physician who created and trademarked the phrase “text neck,” told FoxNews.com. He went on to say that it’s not just a texting problem.
“This is also a gaming issue. 52% of kids from 0 to 8 years old spend about 43 minutes a day on these mobile devices that mimic our cell phones. And that equates to 5 extra hours a week in this ‘text neck’ posture putting pressure on back of the head and neck.”
Of course the best and quickest solution for this is to throw our phones and devices into the bins. But we all know that’s not going to happen. The average Malaysian cannot live without a phone and there are at least 21.7million of us smartphone users in Malaysia.
Did you know?
Did you know that looking down at your device is just like an eight-year old sitting on your head while you are standing? When you’re typing a message, reading e-mails, or browsing the Internet, you’re withstanding about 27kgs of pressure. Can you believe it? No wonder we’re complaining, and imagine what that does to our kids!
“We have teens experiencing the same shoulder, neck and back pain usually felt by people 30 years older,” said Megan Randich, a physical therapist and facility manager for Athletico in Westchester, Illinois. “They shouldn’t be experiencing those issues.” – STAR2
- Chronic headaches, shoulder and neck pains due to the long term muscle strain, disc herniations and pinched nerves
- The shortness of breath can lead to heart and blood vascular disease due to the decrease in lung capacity by as much as 30%
- Stomach pains due to gastrointestinal system is affected; particularly the large intestine. Loss of good bowel peristaltic function and evacuation is a common effect
- Forward head posture that causes the change of muscle alignment
- Possible signs of early arthritis due to the neck curve, resulting in disc compression and damage
What Parents Can Do
- Ideally, limit the time that children are on devices and especially in text neck position
- Do stretching exercises on intervals with them
- Make more time for outdoor freeplay to lessen device usage
- Teach your children to hold the device at eye level