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Topic – Text Neck

Below you will find an easy to read transcript of Dr. Michael Errichiello’s monthly podcast interview. You can click the video to listen to the podcast or simply read the easy to follow transcript below. Enjoy!
Podcast Interview:
RC: Hello, everyone. This is Liz Harvey coming to you from our studios in New York City where we are dedicated to bringing you top quality advice from many of the leading expert professionals across the U.S. In today's episode, we are speaking with chiropractor, Dr. Michael Errichiello of Health One Center located in Ridgefield, New Jersey. Dr. Errichiello graduated from St. John's University with a degree in biology and received his Doctor of Chiropractic degree from New York Chiropractic College. Dr. Errichiello is a member of the American Chiropractic Association and the Association of New Jersey Chiropractors.
Today, we're going to talk about a very important topic:
Text Neck
Hello, Dr. Errichiello, how are you today?
Dr. Michael Errichiello: Doing just fine.
RC: Thanks for joining me.
What is ‘text neck’?
Dr. Michael Errichiello: Text neck is a condition that develops over time resulting from someone constantly looking down at their phone or other mobile devices. The extra pressure on the neck from altered posture usually flattens the normal curvature of your neck or cervical spine resulting in an abnormal strain on our muscle, ligaments, bones, and joints of the neck causing the joints to possibly deteriorate faster than normal and resulting in degenerative joint disease or neck arthritis.
Normally our head weighs about 10 to 12 pounds if it's sitting directly above our shoulders with good posture. But if we bend our head 15 degrees forward, now our head weighs 27 pounds. At 30 degrees forward it can weigh 40 pounds. At 45 degrees forward, it weighs 49 pounds and even some people bend their head as much as 60 degrees forward and it would weigh up to 60 pounds. This can cause extreme tension on our neck and upper back muscles as well as the neck joints and upper back joints.
What are some symptoms people can experience if they have ‘text neck’?
Dr. Michael Errichiello: The effects of poor neck posture go far beyond just looking awkward. In fact, posture and function are related and that poor posture is evident with patients with chronic pain related conditions including lower back pain, neck-related headaches, upper back pain, shoulder pain, pinched nerves, and even your lung capacity can become compromised with poor neck posture.
Is this most common in children and young adults?
Dr. Michael Errichiello: Absolutely. Kids and young adults these days are born with a cell phone in their hands, more so than older adults who didn't grow up with a cell phone in their hands. If you see older adults these days with poor posture, it's not related to cell phones. It's more related to not taking care of their spines when they were growing up.
Can ‘text neck’ cause other problems in the spine and other areas of the body?
Dr. Michael Errichiello: Yes as I mentioned before, with the head bending forward it puts excessive stress on our muscles, ligaments, and vertebrae. You can develop pinches nerves, headaches, changes in lung capacity, shoulder, mid back pain, and even pain can extend into our lower back. It can also affect your blood pressure.
How can people use their devices to avoid getting ‘text neck’?
Dr. Michael Errichiello: The most important thing is raise the phone up, move it eye level so that the head doesn't tilt forward. You could also take frequent breaks. Get away from the phone and other devices that you might be using for a period of time. Also, change your position when texting. We even recommend texting while lying down on your back. You have to stand up straight. Good posture with your shoulders pulled back will keep your back properly aligned. Arching and stretching. Arch the neck and upper back backwards periodically to ease the muscle train. You could also improve your strength and flexibility of the neck. Perform neck exercises on a daily basis. When the muscles are strong and flexible they can hold your posture better.
People with ‘text neck’ have weak and tight chest muscles from being hunched over. You could also turn the technology in your favor. I've heard that there are phone apps that can detect when your phone is being held at a bad angle.
RC: Wow, well thank you so much Dr. Errichiello. We know you're extremely busy so I want to thank you for your time and your help today.
Dr. Michael Errichiello: I appreciate it. Thank you.
RC: For our listeners across the country, if you are interested in speaking with the doctor please visit www.healthonecenter.com or call 201-945-2320 to schedule an appointment. On behalf of our team, we want to thank you for listening and we look forward to bringing you more top quality content from our country's leading experts.

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