Technology is a Pain in the Neck
On average, we stare at our cell phones for almost three hours a day. Looking down at your cell phone, laptop or tablet can cause a loss of firmness in the neck area called “tech neck.” This sign of aging is characterized by sagging skin, drooping jowls and deeper creases above the clavicle.
The skin on the neck is much thinner and more prone to wrinkling. Constantly looking down at your phone creates folds in the skin, which eventually become deep wrinkles. Prolonged periods of looking down also put additional stress on the muscles and nerves in your neck, which can do damage over time.
Your Head is Heavier Than You Think
You may not notice it at the time, but your neck works hard to support your head, especially when it’s held at an angle. The head normally weighs about 10 pounds when the spine is straight. But when you’re holding your head at a 45-degree angle to look down at your phone, the head weighs about 49 pounds. That’s a lot of extra weight to put on your neck.
Take a Stand Against “Tech Neck”
Luckily, there are ways to prevent technology from taking a toll on your neck. First things first, consider your posture when you’re checking email, sending texts or perusing social media. Hold your device higher than normal—ideally at eye level or in a neutral position where you don’t have to tilt your head. This can make a big difference in preventing unnecessary signs of aging, as well as bad posture over time. It also helps to limit the time you spend on your phone or tablet. If you’re working on a laptop, always sit at a desk and place the monitor at eye level to encourage good posture.
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