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New Study Shows Texting Can Be a Pain In the Neck

Posted Nov 15 2009 10:00pm
On a recent episode of Little People Big World, Amy and Matt Roloff give Jacob (their youngest son) a cell phone for his 12th birthday. Well, he ends up racking up more than 8,000 text messages, with an impressive $ 2000 bill for his parents at the same time. Well young Jacob maybe hurting other things in addition to letting down his parents.

This whole “texting” thing has been getting a lot of attention. So I was quite intrigued when I came across a new study that shows that frequent texting can cause neck pain, shoulder pain, upper back pain….Really ! Study Shows that Texting on Cell Phones Can Cause Neck Pain

The study took place at Temple university’s college of health professions and Social Work. Judith Gold, an assistant professor of epidemiology presented the study to the American Public Health Association suggesting that the more college students texted, the more pain they reported in their necks and shoulders.

She reported that most people aged 18 to 21 prefer texting rather than email or phone calls, possibly putting the younger generation at increased risk for overuse injuries once associated with older folks who’ve spent years tapping computer keys.

Gold states, "What we’ve seen so far is very similar to what we see with office workers who’ve spent most of their time at a computer,"

She further goes on to say, "The way the body is positioned for texting -- stationary shoulders and back with rapidly moving fingers -- is similar to the position for typing on a computer.

"Looking around our campus, you see every student on their cell phones, typing away,” she says in a news release. "It’s the age group that texts the most, so it’s important to know what the health effects may be to learn whether it will cause long-term damage."

Gold and colleagues conducted a study of 138 college students to see if correlations exist between the number of text messages sent per day and pain in the upper body. In the study, they used body maps for the students to indicate areas of discomfort. The students were asked how many text messages they sent per day. The researchers say they found an association, ,b>only in male participants , between shoulder discomfort and the number of messages punched out. The researchers propose that males might be particularly susceptible to physical discomfort related to texting.

I often wonder to myself, what did we do when cell phones did not exist ? yes they have vast cabilities that no doubt make our life a lot easier. But remember Texting is similar to any activity that we have to use one body part over and over again. Similar to working at a desk at a computer or being on the the phone all day. Off course it is going to take a toll on our neck, shoulders, arms, wrists and fingers.

I have to laugh everytime one of my sister’s says to me, just send me a text. “Uh…I don’t text, It could take awhile...” - I always answer. Believe it or not there are some techie things I just cannot get used to. Maybe I need to get a fancier phone…maybe I think my fingers are too pudgy for the puny keyboard that the cell phone companies provide. I don’t know I am just not a texter. I prefer the simpler things in life I guess.

Source: Temple University (2009, November 10). Pain In The Neck: Too Much Texting Could Lead To Overuse Injuries. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 15, 2009

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