During the lockdown, one thing is for sure. We have definitely increased reliance on computers and gadgets! Nowadays adults need to work from home and the young ones are forced to engage in virtual learning. While this is a good attempt to maintain a sense of normalcy in terms of work, studies, and social interactions… the same thing can’t be said in terms of its effects health-wise.
People are getting more screen time than ever before, and that can only mean more inactivity, more sitting, and more chances of developing FHP (forward head posture) or as we often call it— the text neck. If you are already familiar with chiropractic concepts, you may already know this one… that for every inch of forwarded head, it can increase the weight of the head on the spine by an additional 10 pounds. This will put extra pressure on the neck and if left uncorrected, this can gradually worsen and cause a lot of pain in the future.
FHP has been a growing concern for us as we regularly encounter patients who have this kind of problem. What’s worse, we noticed that the age group they belong to is getting younger and younger. It’s not only the teens, but this time even grade-schoolers are developing these bad habits of looking down and hunching over their gadgets. As a chiropractor and a parent myself, I find it very unsettling how FHP is slowly becoming part of the new ‘normal’.
I know the repercussions of this in children with developing bodies, that’s why this is something I won’t let them have. As adults, it’s important to help the younger ones understand the implications of poor posture because they are the ones who are most vulnerable. The posture and movements that children practice are likely to become lifelong habits. So if we just let 7-year olds today spend so much time hunching over phones and iPads all day, it is highly likely that they will carry this habit until adolescence and adulthood. That would mean a very painful future in store for them.
This goes for all the adults as well. If you have an 8-hr job and you work from home, chances are you will be always sitting and hunching over in front of the computer as well. No one wants to have a family full of hunched backs right? So when you see there’s constant excessive use of gadgets in your household, it’s better to break the cycle as early as possible.
You can start with a more practical approach like setting up gadget breaks in between or after work and study hours. It’s easy to get bored without the tech, but the point here is to find the right balance with other important activities and encourage family members to be physically active instead. This could help lessen the negative stress from all the sitting and hunching over all day. You can play games in the backyard, cook together, exercise together. Try to spend time with your family so they don’t always seek out gadgets to satisfy their needs for entertainment and social interaction.
And last but not the least, show the young ones the importance of sleep and rest. How would they understand this if they see the adults use computers until midnight? They will just think it’s OK to stay up late and play games. Being a role model may sound like a chore but we have to think about how it will shape our children’s future. By showing them healthy habits like practicing proper posture, exercising regularly, eating a healthy diet, and getting plenty of sleep, they will likely follow your example!
Combat FHP during Pandemic
If you think you have family members who have forward head posture, now is the best time for them to get checked. The first step in correction is to identify the exact measurements of the FHP. Once that is established, a specific corrective care program for FHP is given, including adjustments and specific exercises. We want to help you reverse the forward head posture process. Contact us today at 022 403 1568 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Important note: We are open for Level 2 lock down, but for level 3 lock down we can only attend to urgent care. If you feel you urgently need chiropractic care or have a situation that cannot wait, then please get in touch with us first. We need to ask you some specific questions to determine if we can see you face to face.