How much weight are you putting on your spine?

21 November 2017

With the modern day advances in hand held technology, we are becoming ever more reliant on our devices for information, organisation and communication.

We also now spend a lot of our downtime and social interactions on devices and in front of screens, whether it is your phone, a tablet, a laptop or a gaming machine. All of these devices have one thing in common, the screen and controls are handheld. This usually requires us to look down into our lap or towards our hands that are holding the device. This inevitably leads to a slumped posture, and can be a contributing factor of neck and back pain.

The body responds and adapts to what we repeatedly do to it to help improve the efficiency of the task you are asking it to do. However the body response to the task is not always the most efficient for our muscles and bones.

As we have evolved over the years from our quadruped, head down ancestors, to upright bipedal human beings, our head position has altered to be upright and therefore so has our spine that supports it. To support this upright posture we need all of our muscles in our back to be strong enough to support us in the upright position.

As we spend more time with our head down in a slumped position, we shorten the muscles in the front of our neck and trunk and lengthen the muscles over the back of our body. This imbalance between the front to back musculature is a common finding in patients with chronic neck and back pain.

So while our devices are useful, it is worth paying attention to how much time we spend on them, because we may pay for it with our spines.

Our Perform Physiotherapy team can provide full treatment planning for any condition affecting your muscles, tendons, joints or nerves. We can offer fast referral to scans and orthopaedic surgeons.

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