Monday, June 21, 2010

Cell Phone Kids YIKES!!

A Kaiser Family Foundation study (Generation M2) found 8-18 year-old spend in excess 7.5 hrs/day using some form of mobile device.  Also, 7th - 12th graders report spending an average of 1:35 a day sending or receiving texts. (Time spent texting is not counted as media use in this study.)

As a result, these youngsters are sure to develop a condition known as Forward Head Posture (FHP), which can cause neck pain, headache, shoulder pain, and/or numbness and tingling into the upper extremity. Please talk to your youngster about this. This is not a GOOD THING!!!!!!!!!!  Avoid the problem from the start and look to Chiropractic care to help insure these pediatric spines (spine still has growth plates until 22 years old) are balanced as kids continue to grow.

Generation M2: Media in the Lives of 8- to 18-Year-Olds is the third in a series of large-scale, nationally representative surveys by the Foundation about young people's media use.  It includes data from all three waves of the study (1999, 2004, and 2009), and is among the largest and most comprehensive publicly available sources of information about media use among American youth.  Below is a graph to summarize:

5 Tips For The Correction Of Forward Head Posture:

Forward head posture is a very common imbalance seen today from excessive cell phone use and from bad posture. Correction of forward head posture takes awareness, resolution of underlying causes, and repetition to make a lasting impact. These five tips will help you get faster results.

1. Focus on lifting your chest, not just tucking your head back.

In most cases, forward head posture is accompanied by rounded shoulders and a slouched upper back posture. In this scenario, simply retracting your head will not correct the problem. In fact, this can cause a jamming of the lower cervical vertebra. A simple instruction to help you lift you chest is to imagine you have a helium balloon attached to each of your chest muscles, and they are lifting them toward the ceiling. Many times, just lifting the chest causes a natural retraction of forward head posture.

2. Perform "chin retractions".

A great way to re-program yourself to get rid of forward head posture is to perform 10 chin retractions every hour on the hour throughout the day. If you do this throughout an 8 hour workday, along with lifting your chest, you will have done 80 postural corrections! This will help you re-pattern your posture easily and effectively.

3. Ensure you have proper ergonomics in your phone use, car, at work, and at home.

Make sure your computer height is optimal at work and home. Another great trick to do in your car is to move your rear view mirror just an inch higher. This will remind you to sit straight while driving.  NEVER, NEVER, NEVER prop the phone up with your shoulder & make sure you lift the phone so that you can look straight on when texting or surfing the web.

4. Eliminate food allergies.

Food allergies, particularly to gluten, soy, and dairy, can cause your nasal passages to clog, and make it more challenging to breathe. Forward head posture is very common to individuals that mouth breathe. Think about it, what do they teach during CPR to help someone open their airway? Tip the head back. In a standing position, this is done by extending the cervical spine, which inevitably leads to forward head posture.

5. Stop doing endless amounts of crunches.

Excessive amounts of abdominal training, particularly crunches, can cause an adaptive shortening of the abdominal muscles, which then pulls down on the upper body, leading to forward head posture. This can easily be corrected by performing an appropriate amount of exercise for the muscles that lift the chest and shoulders back and down.

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