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How To Combat Mental/Emotional & Physical Effects Of 'Tech' Neck!

[ Lisa is going to regret her stance from her phone usage!! Don't get Tech Neck!!! ]

[ Virtual Cliques... It looks like these LivingThruGrace ladies need a bit of a digital detox! The only interactions taking place are through technology! Unplug ladies, TALK to each other! ]

While we all reap the benefits of the technological growth in our world these days, unfortunately, it comes with some ill effects on our bodies and our minds. Our spine is the tree that supports our branches. Any tree with a weak and troubled trunk can't effectively support it's structure. Today's technology has griped our attention and is causing a unconscious shift in our brain, a shift in our spinal health, our central nervous system, mental health and our behavior.

[ This is what most of us look like! LOL But, for flamingo's these bent necks are NORMAL; not so much for us! Don't be a flamingo!!! ]

Here we can begin to learn why this happens so that we can take steps to reclaim our health that's been hijacked by modern tech! Our heads are weighty! The human head weighs anywhere from 10 to 12 pounds, so imagine how much pressure that is for our spine for hours at a time day after day!!

Physical symptoms to notice from tech body wipeout ( that's more accurate! LOL ) range from:

* Pain in the neck, Literally! Tech Neck pain can occur when using mobile devices and at other times throughout the day.

* Headaches

* Shoulder pain and stiffness the upper back area

* Poor posture which effects the spine

* Pinched nerves in the neck & shoulder

* Restlessness, & inattentive

* Stressed & tired, not to mention eye strain!

[ Willow's head is propped up and supported by a pillow. Her neck & shoulders get a much needed break from the muscle strain of tech living! ]

One simple way to steer away from tech neck is while looking at your mobile device use your eyes, but NOT you neck to look down. You can lean your head or body back so that you are looking upward at your device; this also helps to support the weight of your head! Told you it was pretty simple, but hard to habitualize! LOL

[ We can't get back time lost spent in the virtual world. Our body's and spirits are showing the signs of this wear and tear...]

Stretching the whole body but especially the neck and shoulder area throughout the day moves the fluids in our joints to keep the flexible, and loosens the neck muscles to

function better. Taking frequent breaks from all mobile devices, Yes! Come on back into the actual world! LOL. It may be useful to use a timer and set it for every 20 minutes or so for those tech breaks.

[ Rest elbow against a flat surface; gently press into the surface, this rotates the outer shoulder blade up & the inner blade down lengthening the muscle. ]

[ Turn head away from the stretched side of the body, positioning the neck downward. This stretches the back of the neck. ]

[ Gently place fingers atop of your head and pull until you feel a stretch--Easy Now! Slowly increasing the stretch Hold each stretch for 30 seconds to 1 minute]

[ Nikita helps demonstrate a few effective neck and shoulder stretches to perform throughout our day to keep those muscles loose and stretched!! Here, stand about 1 to 2 feet from the wall, place forearms against wall with the elbows slightly Below shoulder height. Niki should lower her arms slightly! LOL! Next press into the wall leaning in as far as you can without causing any pain. Hold this stretch for 30 seconds to a minute ]

[ Moist heat Niki's favorite! ]

[ Niki demos the use of dry & moist heat for those overworked neck and shoulder muscles. Moist heat like steam towels, moist heating pads or even a warm bath penetrate deep into the muscles. Dry heat like electric heat pads draw out moisture from the areas applied and can leave the skin extra dry.

Rehydrate the skin after treatment & don't forget that WATER FOR FULL BODY REHYDRATION!! Both are effective methods of treating sore stressed muscles. Sunas, steam rooms and hot baths all help to provide total body relaxation and aids with spastic muscles that just wont relax. Heat therapy can be an effective and low cost method to treat tight stressed muscles!

If it's within your budget-check Groupon a massage is the ultimate treatment for tight muscles, they also serve to naturally detox the body by stimulating the circulatory system.]

**If you have open wounds, Diabetes or other medical issues that leave you unsure if heat therapy is advisable, talk to your health care provider, or pharmacist. :)

[ A few of these LivingThruGrace ladies despise their core management - I know I do! LOL, but they make time to keep their center's strong so that it can support them throughout their day. We don't want tech neck! LOL!!! ]

A surprising fact is our core strength helps to support out upper body and that includes the neck and shoulder areas! Core strengthening exercises are a surefire way to fight back against tech neck!! ( Oh no!!! :o Ab work! :/ )

Remember our parents and grandparents old adage, Sit/Stand up straight!? Well, there's wisdom behind that command ( as usual LOL ). Posture not only helps us to be less slouched, it effects our BRAIN. Yep, it's pretty important. Our mood, our lung health through our oxygen intake, ( Asthma Warriors listen up! ), our memory, our energy and even our bone growth can be effected through the way we hold our body! I think we can all take some cues from ballerina's and their elegant stance!!

[ Years of discipline affords ballerina's their beautiful posture, but we can put ourselves through a posture 'Bootcamp' and begin gaining proper posture too!! ]

While we don't need to walk around in Arabesque ( like above) or Pirouette around town, (but we'd be in fabulous shape wouldn't we?! LOL ) to save our sanity,

:() Walk tall, sit strong and straight!! Heads up, shoulders back, slouch free! A powerful posture isn't so easy as many of us are used to at least a slight slumping. Combining that with 'flamingo necks' from working on a computer, and engaging with all our other tech; not to mention being tired so we slump into seats, sofas, cars and so on. It's going to take a bit of awareness, strength and practice on our parts if we want to save ourselves! :()

[ Most people today only see the world through a screen...Wouldn't you like to experience the beauty of reality?? ]

It's ingrained in us in today's culture to bury ourselves in out technology, [ I forgot my phone yesterday while at the eye doc, and it felt so strange, I couldn't update blog posts, or social media posts, or read etc... but after a few minutes, I found myself relaxed and I used my time to be still and listen, to connect with my Lord. What a peaceful waiting experience that was!!! ] No matter if we're by ourselves or with others, let's take the time to Unplug from this addictive habit. [ Set aside time for tech & time for real living! ] Unplug from the desire to text someone rather than engage with them. Work for many make it difficult to Unplug in order to get work accomplished :/ However, it's up to us to figure into our lives a workable recipe of balance for our well being and for future generations that look to us as living examples.

[ As humans, we are designed by God for interactions with one another...]

Unplug from deciding that human interactions are less important than tech ones. Let's plug back into our lives, back intro teaching our kids that personal relationships with others are a necessary and rewarding part of the human experience. Plug into the natural design that God created. Our whole body health is at stake!

An anxious heart weighs a man down, but a kind word cheers him up.

~Proverbs 12:25

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