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At Kirkland Health Institute in Kirkland, WA, we strive to educate our patients on chronic health conditions and the ways that natural healing can help them. Our blogs provide reliable information on how you can lead a more active lifestyle and take steps toward healthy living.

Smartphone Effects On Body

January 11, 2022

What Effects Do Smartphones Have On Your Body?

What is one of today's modern conveniences that most people would say they can't live without? If you're like about 77% of the population of the United States (statistic according to the Pew Research Center) you will probably say your smartphone. Just look around you, people, kids and adults, are walking and texting, eating and following social media, playing games, talking on their phones or asking "Google" a question. 

It's understandable why we feel we can't live without them...they can help us do so much...but you seldom see people without one in their hand...we have become extremely dependent on them.

But with that convenience and dependence comes potential problems for your body.

Possible problems caused by smartphones and what you can do to avoid them...

  1.  Problems with your neck and spine
    •  Most people, when using their smartphones, use them in such a position that they need to tilt their head forward at a 60° angle in order to see the phone. When you consider that your head weighs about 10 pounds, holding it at that flexed position, either for long periods of time or over and over, puts a lot of stress on your neck and spine and can cause alignment issues, posture problems, and wear and tear on your discs.
    • If you wedge your phone between your shoulder and your head, you stand the chance of making things even worse..
      • When possible, use earbuds when talking on the phone, and try to hold the phone at a higher angle when texting, gaming or searching.
  2. Problems with your wrists and elbows
    • Overuse of a smartphone is being reported as a probable cause for carpal tunnel...inflammation and numbness in the wrists, elbows and fingers. In fact, a new term has been coined for this type of syndrome in smartphone users - "cellphone elbow."
      • Things you can do to help save your wrists and elbows from this type of pain are: use voice to text or use the swipe feature for text messages, periodically stretch your arms and fingers, switch hands or use both hands at the same time, and try to keep your wrists as straight as possible..
      • Important! Take breaks from your games...short breaks now may help you avoid longer breaks if you need to have your wrists or arms immobilized or worse have surgery. 
  3. Other problems...
    • Studies have shown that high use of your smartphone can add stress to your life, due to the constant vibrating, ringing and pressure of winning games.
    • People are becoming less and less "in-person" social and relationships are suffering. All you need to do is take a look around a restaurant, at a park or even at the family dinner table. Everyone is on their phone, not paying attention to the people around them. We need live interaction with other people,
    • Smartphones near your bed can impact the quality of sleep you get. If you check your phone during the night it's bright lights will either limit or stop the production of melatonin, along with the possibility of the "blue light" of the screen  possibly damaging your eyes when looked at in the dark. 
    • Staring too long at your digital screen can cause vision problems later on in life.

I'm not suggesting we stop using our smartphones, but let's be smart about how we use them.

If you are experiencing chronic pain in your neck, back, wrists or elbows, your chiropractor may be able to relieve that pain by making adjustments. But then it's up to you to make the changes necessary to avoid future pain from using your smartphone.

I specialize in functional medicine, if you are experiencing chronic pain, or you're not happy with the health you're in...a comprehensive blood test could help identify your problems - Contact Me to schedule your Free consultation.


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