The Best Ways to Avoid Text Neck and Improve Your Posture
How many hours per day do you look down at your phone? How many hours do you hunch over your computer? Slouch on the couch watching tv? Stand at the counter prepping meals?
All of these habits dramatically affect your posture and your health! Let’s look at some of the causes of poor posture and how you can work to correct it and positively benefit your health at the same time.
First of all, how does my posture affect my health?
Your brain controls every single function of your body, whether or not you are aware of it. Your brain sends all of this information through the major highway of your body, called the nervous system, which is encased by the bones of the spine.
If your spine becomes out of alignment, it puts pressure on your nervous system, and the messages can not get to every single cell, tissue and organ, so that your body can function properly, and so that it can heal.
Any symptom that your body creates, is an indication that your spine is out of alignment, putting pressure on your nervous system. For example,
Digestive problems – T6, L1
Gall bladder issues – T4
Headaches – C1
Asthma – T1, T3
Allergies, sinus problems – C2
Take a look at the chart below to identify symptoms that you are experiencing, and you can trace every issue back to the corresponding vertebra being subluxated (out of alignment).
Chart courtesy of: http://n8.nwawellness.net/nervous-system-chart/
WHAT IS TEXT NECK?
Text neck is a condition that has developed alongside technology. The more you look down at your screen, the more you train your neck to stay in a forward head position, which causes major subluxations at the very top of your spine. If the messages originating in your brain can not easily travel to the rest of your body due to subluxations so close to the source (the very top of your spine) this causes damaging interference to the rest of your spine.
Start looking around, and you will begin noticing “text neck” or forward head posture, where the head is carried at a protruding angle, no longer in line with the shoulders.
SO HOW DO I FIX SUBLUXATIONS?
The only way to fix subluxations, is to have a doctor of chiropractic ADJUST the vertebrae back into proper alignment, taking the pressure off of the nervous system, allowing your body to return to health through healing directed by your innate intelligence.
How do I prevent getting subluxated again in the future?
It is very difficult to completely avoid becoming subluxated again in the future, because many things we do throughout the day have the potential to create more subluxations and poor posture. That is so many people choose lifetime chiropractic care, because as you are healing subluxations, more are bound to be created.
Again, we can relate subluxations to oral hygiene. You keep brushing your teeth, because you keep eating food. And I’m sure you’d like to keep your teeth!! It’s the same thing with chiropractic care. You keep getting adjusted because you keep doing things that cause subluxations. Like driving, texting, sitting for too long, slouching, eating poor food, being exposed to a variety of toxins, experiencing stress, having a car accident, trip or fall, carrying your children, repetitive work situations, etc.
So the question becomes, how can I minimize my subluxations, and support my chiropractic care, posture and nervous system health?
Here are a few tips…
1. Watch your habits! How do you tend to sit on the couch, at the kitchen table, at your desk? Are you slouching, sitting tall, do you have lower back support, do your feet comfortably touch the ground? It’s important to support your spine and sit tall, to minimize the pressure on your discs and vertebrae of your lower back, which are trying to keep you aligned. Help yourself!
2. Home Care Exercises. Has Dr. Matthew prescribed home care exercises for you, to continue to train your body to stay in alignment between adjustments, and work with your muscles to support your frame? Ask if you are ready for home care!
3. Do you have orthotics? These shoe inserts can be quite helpful to align your feet and help with arch support, which helps your ankles, knees, hips and spine to stay in alignment.
4. Exercise is important to give your body the opportunity to move dynamically and stretch! Start gently with yoga and stretching, and add in swimming, walking or dancing. High intensity, quick work outs are also a great way to add powerful movement to your lifestyle. Ask Dr. Matthew which style of movement would be best for your body, in consideration of any conditions or lifestyle factors that may be limiting.
5. Support your entire being with whole food, plant based nutrition. Aim for as many fruits and vegetables of all colours, that you can add to your diet every day. This will start to squeeze out the bad stuff and leave you feeling amazing. Of course, it’s important to add raw nuts and seeds and legumes to your diet, healthy fats like avocado, chia seeds and hemp seeds, and lots of purified water. If you choose to eat meat, be sure that it is locally raised, organic, free-range, grass-fed, antibiotic free and humanely raised.
6. Reduce your stress levels. Start a meditation practice, write in your journal, make time for hobbies that you enjoy, have a hot bath and read a book, get out to enjoy some time in nature, and create a few rituals that automatically bring your stress levels down, such as making your favourite tea and enjoying it on your balcony.
7. Reduce your toxins! They are literally lurking everywhere; in your cleaning supplies, such as detergent, dish soap, hand soap, window cleaners, toilet cleaners, air fresheners, and in all of your cosmetics and hygienic products such as shampoo, conditioner, soap, body wash, hand cream, body lotion, deodorant, make up, and perfume. These items are filled with hundreds of chemicals that are known carcinogens and nervous system disruptors, not to mention hormone mimicking agents and commercial solvents. You can find clean versions of every product you could ever need, at your local health food store, or you can make your own! Vinegar and baking soda is a very powerful cleaning agent, and coconut oil has hundreds of purposes, from hand and body moisturizer, to a nice deodorant when mixed with essential oils. Search out non-toxic products to minimize your toxic load everywhere you can, and of course, avoid vaccinations, pharmaceuticals and antibiotics if at all possible!
8. Limit screen time! Or at least hold your phone up and stop looking down so often!! Lean your head back and look up from time to time, to release the tension you put on your spine from looking down at your screen for extended periods.
Make an appointment with Dr. Matthew today, by calling the office at 905-417-5272 to get checked for subluxations. When you remove the interference, your body naturally heals.
Jo-Anne Richardson, Registered Holistic Nutritionist, Chiropractic Assistant & Energy Medicine Practitioner, Guest Blogger for Vellore Chiropractic & Wellness Centre
Jo-Anne is the founder of the online organic lifestyle brand, FabuLuscious.org where she provides online education for clients and patients. Her interest in healthy, joyful living is demonstrated in her writing, coaching and teaching. Her goal is to improve the health of our community by empowering you with knowledge, support and new ideas.
Look and feel Fabulous, while enjoying a healthy, Luscious lifestyle.