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Four Easy Ways to Fight Forward Head Posture

woman in car on smartphone
Photo by Igor Starkov on Unsplash

Forward head posture, “text neck”, anterior head syndrome… these are just a few names for this common postural condition can lead to neck pain, headaches, sore shoulders, reduced respiratory function, early degeneration of my neck spine and many others. All of these painful conditions can certainly get in the way of fun activities like skiing, playing golf, running marathons, playing video games, adventures with grandchildren, and conquering fitness goals.

While forward head posture is nothing new, computers, sedentary jobs and smart phones has made this condition much more common. If ignored, it can lead to permanent changes to the neck spine and eventually will cause a fully hunched over “nursing home posture”. While it could take decades before that occurs, by the time that it does, correcting the posture may no longer be possible.

Here are four easy ways you can fight forward head posture now:

  • Take breaks and stretch when sitting at a computer, playing video games, or using your phone or tablet for an extended period of time. Here’s an example stretching sequence. Practice it slowly, and hold each position for a few moments:
    • Tilt your head back, then forward.
    • Turn to look to your left and to your right.
    • Tilt your head to your left shoulder and your right shoulder.
    • Squeeze your shoulder blades together.
    • Roll your shoulders back.
    • None of these moves should cause any pain, if they do see tip #4.
  • Try neck planks.
    • While lying on your stomach, hold your head up and away from the floor.
    • Hold for 5 seconds.
    • Repeat 10 times and rest.
    • Practice this sequence daily, increasing the hold time by one second until you can hold it for 15 seconds.
    • Neck planks should not hurt or cause a muscle spasm, if they do, the problem may be more complex than muscle weakness.
  • Strengthen the neck with this move.
    • Stand with your back to a wall
    • Push your head against the wall and hold.
    • If you can’t touch the back of your head to the wall, use a folded towel to make up the distance.
  • Schedule an exam with Catalyst Chiropractic to evaluate your neck structure. We’ll perform a complete spinal exam, along with a motion study x-ray of your neck. With this information, we can create a personalized treatment plan to help you correct forward head posture.
woman in yoga plank
Photo by bruce mars from Pexels

Spinal Health for Preschoolers

Dr. Johanna had a great time doing a presentation at a local pre school today.  Teaching 3 year old and 5 year old children how to do a simple routine of daily spinal exercises.  The basic presentation revealed to the kids, that their backbone was in fact 24 separate bones.  Quite a surprise for the kids, Dr Johanna let them examine her model of a spine and they got to see the 24 bones for themselves.

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Opening the floor to questions, the kids got to discuss what they thought was the most important organ in their body.  The brain, and how the spine connects the brain to the rest of the body.  Learning how a healthy spine can help you grow, play and learn better got the kids fired up and excited to do their spinal hygiene exercises.

 

Do you know any schools that would like Dr Johanna to come in, to teach kids about their spine and how it helps them grow?  Contact Catalyst Chiropractic at 603 791 0222 or drjo@catalystchironh.com to schedule her 30 minute presentation.