Anterior Head Syndrome has more recently become known as “text neck.” Some other names are Anterior Head Carriage, Forward Head Posture or Upper Crossed Syndrome. Regardless of what it’s called, Anterior Head Syndrome is becoming more and more prevalent in today’s generation.
This is an abnormal forward positioning of the head, relative to the shoulders due to poor postural habits, muscle imbalance and restriction in mobility of the spine.
Over time forward head posture can lead to muscle imbalances as the body tries to adapt and find efficient ways to hold the head up and spinal mobility will eventually be affected too.
When trying to correct forward head posture and relieve neck pain, some muscles need to be targeted for strengthening and other muscles need to be relaxed to help reduce forward head and rounded shoulder posture.
It is important to correct Anterior Head Syndrome as early as possible because these changes can become hard to change and more ongoing pain is often the result. It is not surprising as every inch of forward head posture adds up to 10 lbs of stress to the neck and shoulder muscles.
• Forward head posture and rounded shoulders - muscles in the neck and upper back can become imbalanced due to prolonged forward head posture, which will make it difficult for you to maintain good posture.
• Reduced mobility - The neck, upper back and shoulders may all experience some tightness and reduced mobility.
• Headaches - Muscles at the base of the neck could go into spasm and become painful, the pain can also be referred from the neck into the head. Constantly looking at screens, regardless of posture, may also increase the risk for eyestrain and headaches.
• Pain during neck flexion - ‘Text neck’ symptoms tend to worsen when the neck is flexed forward into the position that originally caused the problem, such as while looking down and texting or playing on the computer.
• Raise your phone or tablet to eye level so that the head does not have to be tilted.
• Take frequent breaks by spending more time away from your mobile phone or computer to help relieve the pressure on your neck.
• Stand up straight using good posture, ideally with the chin tucked in and shoulders pulled back. This keeps the body aligned and in a neutral position.
• Exercise regularly as a strong, flexible neck and back are more able to handle the extra stress.
• Keep stretching the neck and upper back backwards and forwards.
If you can not get into the right posture, you might need help to mobilise the neck and upper back.
Here at Isis Chiropractic, we see many symptoms arising from chronic Anterior Head Posture. Our Chiropractors at the clinic will help you to understand what changes you need to make to your lifestyle and your working environment.
If Anterior Head Syndrome becomes a real problem for you, come and visit us at Isis Chiropractic!
Read more about Anterior Head Posture here.