‘Text Neck’ is the new in ailment for the tech generation

Posted Jan. 19, 2012, at 3:06 p.m.

Never mind that mobile phones have wreaked havoc in traffic and produced a generation of westerners who can’t endure a moment alone. Now the devices have generated their own disability: “Text Neck.”

The term was coined by a South Florida chiropractor who defines the condition as: Overuse syndrome involving the head, neck and shoulders, usually resulting from excessive strain on the spine from looking in a forward and downward position at any hand-held mobile device, such as mobile phone, video game unit, computer, MP3 player or e-reader. This can cause headaches, neck pain, shoulder and arm pain, breathing compromise and much more.

People at risk? Those who twist themselves into unnatural contortions in order to use hand-held devices, often two at a time.

Dr. Dean Fishman came up with the term after noticing among his patients a fast increase in repetitive stress injuries that he traced to hand-held devices. That’s when he created the Text Neck Institute and registered the Text Neck term.