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HPE INDIA - Healthcare, Physiotherapy and Ergonomics

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Text Neck Syndrome

Gadgets are Bad for your Neck
Human and their love for advance attractive electronic gadgets.
while EVOLUTION had been for a cause, excessive use of electronic gadgets is cause of 
On an average,  8 - 10 hrs are utilised on regular basis using various gadgets.  It's kind of new addiction to millenials. Excessive amount of time spent on any  application or  use of Smartphone, I Pads, Laptop and Desktop for work related occupation has provoke human to incline towards the screen. 
Continuous looking down ( forwards bending / forwards head)  leads to
"mechanical dysfunction" in the neck which has been observed in the younger population leading to problem such as
"spondylitis" at an early age.

"How does this Mechanical Dysfunction happen over 
usage of the phone, desktop and laptop." 
Cervical Spine (ie. Neck ) has 7 Spinal bones (Vertebrae) divided into 
3 subcranial (skull, C1 and C2) and 4 real cervical vertebrae. 
3 subcranial movement for limited to do only nodding (Yes) or Rotation (NO)
rest 4 are actual movement of the neck  
(i.e forward - backward Bending, Side Bending and Rotation).
Human Neck evolved to have a curve (i.e Lordosis )
to support the skull in its maximum stability.

 prolong forward and side bending leads to mechanical dysfunction
  i.e displacement of the vertebrae in adaptation to the posture from its normal alignment  or in other words - posture adapted as a habit, natural tendency, slouching and other.
"What dysfunction happen when you spend time on the gadgets"
1. To maintain head in neutral, your skull bend backward on the upper 2 cervical vertebrae - causing the occipital muscles at C1 and C2 to shorten leading to compression of nerve causing occipital and temporal headache.
2. The muscular spasm in the rest of vertebrae (C3 - C7) causes loss of lordosis
(straightening of neck curve).  Prolonged muscular spasm causes wear and tear of the vertebrae capsule leading to Conventional SPONDYLOSIS leading to spondylitis 

loss of lordosis
loss of lordosis
3. Muscles surrounding the neck like Trapezius, SCM,  and Levator Scapulae become tight, because of over use, forms muscular knots within inside leading to muscle imbalance in either side.

SCM, Levator scapulae and Trapezius
SCM, Levator scapulae and Trapezius
4. Tightness in muscle, affect the ligament and capsule leading to Narrowing of foramen to cause nerve compression, result in tingling and numbness sensation in the arm and fingers.
" Often termed as radiating / referred pain "
5. Reduced space between vertebrae can cause shear forces on  disc to slip backward causing impingement on the nerve roots to cause similar radiating pain.
6. Forward head posture force JAW to open, to keep the jaw closed, the muscle surrounding the jaw are tightened causing increase compressive force on
TMJ joint giving pain 
7. Shoulder become protracted (rounded) because of tightness of anterior chest muscle (pectoralis major)  causing impingement in rotator cuff tendon, leading to overhead movement restrictive and painful.
8. Thoracic outlet syndrome is seen due to overactivity of abdominal muscle, decreasing diaphragmatic breathing and increasing load of neck muscles.
as a resultant we suffer from.....conditions like 
cervical spondylosis, 
thoracic outlet syndrome, 
nerve impingement, 
rotator cuff impingement syndrome, 
Shoulder Pain.
Jaw pain and Headache 


How do you prevent this

Avoid long usage of electronic products. Take regular and frequent break while working. Avoid sitting in one position for long.
Avoid forward bending, keep the gadgets at your eye level to avoid bending and at a safer distance of 50 cms from eyes.
Arms should be rested at arm rest at 90 degree.
Stretch your shoulder and neck muscles before you start your work on desktop.
Use cervical pillow while sleeping straight.
Regular shoulder and neck exercises.
Ice Packs after a strenuous work for 15 - 20 Min
Myofascial release once in 15 days. 
Consult physical therapist once a week to align your neck and spine correctly.
Dry needling most effective for removal of knots in muscles.



Expert Physical Examination by physical therapist or chiropractor.
Cervical X ray in Neutral Position in 2 view: AP and Lateral
Ultrasonography - Muscular spasm
MRI - other clinical symptoms

Physical Therapy

After proper physical examination and assessment, physical therapy treatment option for Acute stage : Pain Relief
1. PRICe Protocol ( 24 - 48hrs) : Protection, Rest, Ice, Compression. 
2. Myofascial Release. (Superficial, Light Stroke)
3. Functional Dry Needling.
4. Kinesio Taping.
5. Stretching in limited range.
6. Grade 1 - Mobilization.
Chronic Stage
for pain relief
1. Heat.
2. Fascia release.
3. myofascial release.
4. Cupping
5. Dry Needling
6. Kinesio Taping
For Range of Motion Restriction 
1. Stretching.
2. Maitland mobilization.
3. Chiropractic Adjustment.
4. Strengthening Exercises.

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