Text Neck – Neck Pain from our handheld devices

 In Blog

Text Neck is a term used to describe neck pain and damage that we get from hours spent looking down at our handheld devices including phones, tablets and other hand-held devices.

Text Neck is not a new problem as for years people have had to look down while reading books, however people are spending more time looking down on these devices without changing positions.  From a young age even toddlers are now able to use Tablets and Smartphones, it is becoming more alarming for the young, growing generation to develop neck problems for this reason.

Our neck muscles support the weight of the head, on average weighing 10-12 pounds. When texting the position of the head is at a 60 degree angle placing 60 pounds of weight on the neck.

Text Neck

Image courtesy of Surgical Technology International

Symptoms of Text Neck:

  • Upper back Pain and tightness
  • Shoulder Pain
  • Neck pain – dull nagging pain
  • When a nerve is pinched in the neck you may experience neurological symptoms into your arm and hand (numbness, tingles, pins and needles)


Prevention of ‘Text Neck’ is easy and can be done by breaking bad habits!

  • Holding your phone at eye level as much as possible
  • Getting an Ergonomic Assessment of your workstation – the screen of your laptop/computer should be at eye level
  • Taking frequent breaks

Rehabilitation programmes are provided by your Physiotherapist is important. Here at Flood Street Physiotherapy, Galway we are trained in assessing your cervical spine. Our Physiotherapists will provide a comprehensive treatment plan consisting of manual adjustments, soft tissue massage and also dry needling if necessary.

Our Chartered Physiotherapists will identify any muscle imbalances in your neck and upper shoulders that may be contributing to your symptoms. From this assessment our Physiotherapists will be able to tailor an individualised strengthening and stretching programme to any imbalances that were identified.

Some rehabilitation programmes may consist of a core stability programme as our core muscles play an important role in maintaining a good neck position while sitting and standing.

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