Here are some interesting facts
Did you know the average person spends 5+ hours on their cell phones? According to Tech Crunch, cell phone usage has been increasing by 20% each year since 2013. Combine that with a total of other screens, CNN states that Americans are spending over 10 hours a day in front of screens!
These technologies have not been around since only recently in human history. Do you think our bodies have adapted to this sudden change? I say definitely, and in this blog, I will be discussing one of the negative effects: Forward Head Posture.
Forward Head Posture Video by CerebralBody
What is Foward Head Posture?
Basically what happens here, is that the front muscles of the neck are tightened due to being shortened. This causes the muscles in the back of the neck to be extremely stressed due to carrying an extra load throughout the day. The human head is 10-12 lbs, so you can see in the image above how the additional stress of having forward head posture can have.
What Causes Forward Head Posture?
Unless you have mindfully paid attention to maintaining correct posture and ensuring muscles are properly aligned, it is very possible, even likely, that you are being affected by some sort of posture related issues.
In the last century, people have gone from virtually no hours looking at a screen to now 10+ hours doing each day. Practicing correct posture or getting quality movement of our bodies in our daily routines is not common.
Does that sound a little absurd? How can people waste so much time in front of a screen each day? And if so, who cares? Or are you a bit concerned that you may be spending a similar amount of time as mentioned above?
Forward Head Posture Factors Checklist
Here’s a short checklist to see if you may be having issues with not having correct posture that may lead to Forward Head Posture
- You have an office job that is mostly done at a desk. 5-8 hours, depending on the type of job is done hunched over a computer! In a previous blog, I discussed in depth 2 reasons why hips and lower back pain is made poor.
- Plenty of people are now choosing to spend their leisure time engaged with a tablet or cell phone. More screen time is often not spent maintaining correct posture.
- You use the phone for browsing social media and websites.
- Have conversations through text or social media regularly throughout the day.
- Long commutes are not good for the body. This is why your butt may get sore from sitting too long. Elderly or disabled people often die from sitting too long due to bed sores!
- Not having regular exercise. For most people, the only time they mindfully pay attention to the movement of their body is when exercising. Unfortunately, that does not guarantee proper form, and there are a large number of people who do not exercise regularly.
How Does Forward Head Posture Affect You?
The muscles in the back of your neck are extremely stressed due to being overworked. The front muscles are not being used effectively if at all.
Poor posture is almost never an isolated incident. Chances are, at least the thoracic or upper back is affected.
Other Issues: Breathing, Headaches, and Stress
According to this article, the majority of people are correctly using their diaphragms to breathe deeply and this has a serious health issue, rapid shallow breaths are obtained. This constricts the lungs and activates the parasympathetic nerves of lungs more. This is the nerves involved in the flight or fight response and is why people who are hyperventilating breathe into bags to slow the breath.
There are many others, such as kyphosis. Also, I wrote about correct sitting posture in a previous blog post. Eventually, I would like to go over the entire list, but forward head posture seems to be the most interesting topic for discussion at the moment.
According to the American Chiropractic Association (ACA) 80% of Americans experience back pain, and it’s the second most common reason for missed work!
Getting professional help from a chiropractor or physical therapist will be tremendously effective. Although learning steadily on your own through online resources is a great start as well!
Here is Jacob Harden on instagram @dr.jacob.harden demonstrating expertise on the subject and how to fix.
With our company, CerebralBody, our vision is to share and teach knowledge, as well as provide products and services, related to the body so people can improve their lives and sense of well-being.
Something that may also help with cases of Forward Head Posture are Cervical Neck Traction Devices and other Neck Braces for support. At our shop, we carry a few versions of them.
Thank you for reading. Hopefully, you have at least one course of action to help alleviate Forward Head Posture for yourself or someone you know!