Text Neck

The more recently titled problem of “text neck” grows ever more prevalent. This is neck pain as a result of ongoing use of and looking down at a mobile phone or other device.

It may cause pain, muscle tension, sometimes nerve interruption and if practiced regularly enough, maybe speed up wear and tear changes. Long term practice of any postural bad habit will cause some areas to get over-worked and others to weaken, creating an imbalance in the way the body is held and consequently functions.

Some tips to avoid this problem:

  1. Raise your phone or other device more to eye level to avoid tilting your neck forward.
  2. Stand or sit up straight.
  3. Take frequent breaks away from the device you’re using.
  4. Stretch and strengthen your body to maintain good function. 
  5. Treat pain as a warning sign and address any potential problems if and when they arise.

Follow this link for some basic neck mobility exercises. Let me know if you need further help.



Do you have spiky balls?

Trigger points are recognised by most of us as sore spots or knots in our muscles. However not every sore spot is a trigger point. They can be long-term and cause deep discomfort and aching.

They are painful “lumps or nodules” found within tight bands of muscles and they are characterised by the following factors:

  • The pain is intense and felt at a specific point.
  • A “lump/nodule” can be felt within a tight band of muscle.
  • Applying pressure to the area reproduces the pain and may sometimes cause referred pain elsewhere. These referred pains are specific in their distributions.
  • It is not trigger point pain if it can be explained by findings from a neurological examination.

There is often no known mechanism of injury. Sometimes trigger points might cause unexpected symptoms due to their interaction with the autonomic nervous system. For example skin blanching, goosebumps, increased sweating, dizziness, earache, stiffness, difficulty breathing… Of course other possible causes to such symptoms may need to be ruled out first.

Trigger points reduce the efficiency of the muscle they lay within, so they are important to identify and address in order to reduce pain and restore normal function. Other benefits of addressing them are improving posture and increasing range of motion.

In clinic I can identify and interact with these trigger points through examination and hands-on treatment, laser therapy can also produce quick and profound changes. Exercises can be a useful approach to try and prevent the return of the problem.

At home it is possible to use various tools, most commonly foam rollers and spiky balls so you can address the problem yourself or support a course of treatment at home.

They’re an acquired taste, but spiky balls may help you?!

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