Category Archives: teens

Can Mobile Devices Really Take a Toll On Your Health?

We’ve all had parents that say how mobile phones are ruining our health.

The internet has even made a meme out of our parent’s tendency to blame our smartphones for every small disease. Your parents may not be right about your phone causing that running nose. But, according to recent research, but it’s definitely capable of doing a lot worse.

This recent white paper breaks down and analyzes the key aspects of the study: “Assessment of stresses in the cervical spine caused by posture and position of the head” as published in the Surgical Technology International Journal in 2014. Using mobile phones was always said to have medical consequences like weakening the eyesight. But, as a matter of fact,

those problems are nothing compared to the effects of using a smartphone on your posture.

This study was conducted to see how exactly a mobile phone could alter your body’s structure.

The study was based on a simple concept:  People bend their head in a forward direction while on their phones. Constantly using that unnatural position can cause severe physical difficulties and modify bone structures in an undesirable way. And billions of people are falling prey to this epidemic every single day.

This uncontrollable use has been producing an alarming amount of pressure on the tissues of the cervical spine of the users. That pressure causes unwanted spinal problems and bone misalignments. The results of this study were extremely astonishing. It showed that using our mobile phones could be the root cause behind constant backaches and bone problems.

The real objective behind the research was to discover the magnitude of the force applied on the cervical spine as the body is contorted forward while using a mobile device.

For this specific study, the head weight was supposed to be 13.2 pounds, which is the average weight of a human head.

However, this number does not remain constant and seemingly fluctuates when a person is using his/her smartphone. The weight on your shoulders is amplified when your head is aligned at a certain degree:

  • 0° changed the weight from 13.2 pounds to 23-25 pounds.
  • 15° degree added another 27 pounds.
  • 30° increased the total weight by 40 pounds.
  • 45° increased the weight by 49 pounds.
  • 60° added a huge 60 pounds on the cervical spine.

Our heads are bend completely at an angle of 60° when using our mobile devices. That means that the weight on your spine and neck is the maximum it could possibly be. These weights, applied for just a couple of hours each day, could completely misalign your whole cervical spine and cause a long list of severe issues, some of which were discussed in the study.

The study defined proper posture as a posture where the ears are perfectly aligned with the shoulders and scapula when retracted. At the same time, poor posture occurs when the head is always tilted in a forward position and the shoulders are drooping forward at the same time.

  • Increased pressure on the cervical spine can often lead to degeneration and surgeries. However, with proper alignment of the spine, these issues can be dissipated.
  • A higher testosterone level increased serotonin, and a decrease in cortisol are all signs of a proper bone structure. While a poor posture results in a reduction of testosterone level and serotonin and an increase in cortisol.

The study also put out certain analysis:

  • An average person spends up to four hours of their day with their neck bent looking at a mobile device.
  • This adds up to 1400 hours of extra stress on the cervical spine per year.
  • High school teens may spend an extra 5000 hours annually with their head bent forward.

Technology is seemingly ruling every single aspect of our lives. and the younger a person is, the more hours they are on their smart phone every single day. This is extremely alarming. The current 2-4 hours of tilted heads is already dangerous enough to ruin the quality of life for most people.

People are spending 700-1400 hours a year, on average, with their head drooped downwards. They are staring at a screen and reading messages or sending out tweets. This ends up creating a poor posture which negatively impacts every process going on inside the body. Poor posture also declines your body’s performance through the endocrine system. Poor alignment of your spine can also result in adverse effects on your testosterone, serotonin and cortisol levels.

The Solution

This research has concluded definitely that while we can’t control or limit the use of mobile devices, we can indirectly counter poor posture. There is an increased need for medical practitioners that can help with fixing a person’s posture. These medical practitioners are chiropractors. They are the world’s defense in the war with the epidemic known as bad posture. Chiropractors do not just relieve patients from temporary pain. They also aim to make the patient’s life easier and more convenient.

Chiropractors can teach exercises to strengthen the spine.  They spread awareness regarding the major cause of the spinal misalignment, so the patient doesn’t have to visit the doctor’s office again for the same exact problem. In short, chiropractors are the key leaders that can help men, women, and kids suffering from spinal problems and improve their posture to help them lead a healthier and prolonged life. So, to sum up the conversation, listen to your parents, they may not hold medical degrees, but they can be right sometimes.

The Tyranny of Heavy Backpacks – The Health Problems and the Solution

Heavy backpacks are one of the major problems for kids in schools today. Little kids have to drag around huge bags filled with bulky books, while teenagers just need a book or two to get through with their day. 90% of children say that back pain due to heavy bags was “bad” or “very bad” for them[1].See the problem?

These kids don’t have the strength to carry such bags and end up developing severe back problems. In this post, we’ll be discussing the problems that may rise due to heavy backpacks and follow it up with a completely natural solution. But, before we jump into the main subject, let’s talk a minor detour to talk about which backpacks qualify as a heavy one.

What Should Be the Size of Your Kid’s Backpack?

Basically, the American Academy of Pediatrics reports that the recommended weight should be less than 10% of the child’s own weight while the maximum amount is 20%. This means that if your child weighs 40 kg, ideally, their backpack should be 4 kg, but it could go on to 5 kg. But, anything above that means that you’re putting your child at risk of severe chronic pain at their current age and later in life as well.

What Health Problems Could Rise Because of Heavy Backpacks?

There are a variety of different problems, here’s just a few of them.

  • Kids that wear backpacks over a single shoulder, mainly because they think they look cool, are putting all that extra weight on just one arm. This makes that side lean more as compared to the other one and put themselves at a risk of straining their shoulder and neck.
  • Heavier backpacks will lead to bad posture. If your kid is wearing a backpack for even 15 minutes each day, they could potentially harm their spine and misalign their posture.
  • Backpacks with tight and small straps dig into your shoulders. While this may seem like something that doesn’t do more than create mere irritation, it could interfere with circulation and put unnecessary pressure on the nerves.
  • Other than the direct effects, a big backpack could injure your child indirectly too. For example, they could trip because of heavier bags while passing through narrow places like the aisle of a school bus.
  • Heavy backpacks can greatly affect a person’s balance. And, if your kid is put off balance, they will probably have to live with that impairment.

This is just a tip of the iceberg. If we carried on, we’d probably find a couple dozen stuff that goes wrong when a little kid carries around an enormous backpack. This probably emphasizes the importance of making your child’s bag lighter. Here’s a few things you could do to achieve your goal.

  • Advice your kids to wear both straps.
  • Use thick padding on the bags.
  • Ensure even distribution of weight.
  • Changing to a rolling backpack.
  • Teach your kid to put the backpack at a higher surface to easily wear/remove it.
  • Secure the straps. A simple sewing machine will do the job just fine.
  • Make sure that the bag isn’t loose. Don’t let it lie below the lower back.
  • Keep a close eye on the kid’s daily lessons and only let them carry books that they will need that day. Try your best to eliminate all the unnecessary weight.
  • Teach your child to organize the backpack in such a way that the heaviest books are at the very back so the weight doesn’t pull your kid backwards.
  • A chest belt will secure the bag and will make the content feel lighter.

But, if you already notice signs of improper postures and several of the other effects listed above, don’t worry. There’s a really easy to solution to ensure that the effects don’t last for very long. And, the answers you’re looking for is something called chiropractic care.

Chiropractic Care for Kids

Yes, chiropractic care is also useful for kids. You might have seen seniors visiting chiropractors to improve their movement, but some kids also need this care to prevent future problems. There are chiropractors specially trained to treat kids, so don’t worry about the therapy hurting your kid instead of helping him.

What Can Chiropractic Care Do For My Kid?

It’s pretty straightforward, if your kid has a misaligned posture, or pretty much any problem because of a heavy backpack, a chiropractor will be able to fix them. You won’t just be getting rid of your child’s pains, you’ll be improving their quality of life. And, if you continue with chiropractic care throughout their life, you’ll be automatically making them healthier for when they step into the later parts of their life. Just to sum up the conversation, here’s all you need to know about how chiropractic care can improve your kid’s life.

  • Concentration: Is your child having trouble concentrating? The most probable reason is their bag interfering with the nervous system in the neck region. This impairs a person’s ability to concentrate and in the near future, this condition will be diagnosed as a case of ADHD. Chiropractic care paired with a healthy diet can repair this issue.
  • Proper Growth: Early structural and postural problems can cause lasting problems such as scoliosis. The structural issues damages the nerves in such a way that the body can’t grow normally, leading to stunted or heightened growth. Appropriate care will heal the child’s impaired structure and allow them to grow as nature intended for them to.
  • Sleep: Most kids struggle with sleeping problems. But, do you realize that sleeping problems are actually a reaction of your body to the stress on your nervous system? By relieving some of that stress through chiropractic, your child will actually have a much regular sleeping pattern.

Closing Thoughts

At the end, we’d like to say that even if your child isn’t showing a symptom per se, that doesn’t mean they won’t benefit from chiropractic care. Chiropractors are actually a proactive solution that’ll knock down a huge amount of the problems before they even have a chance to develop. Just book a few sessions for your child, we guarantee they’ll feel better immediately.

[1] https://www.webmd.com/back-pain/news/20040813/heavy-backpacks-can-hurt-student-backs