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Chiropractor shows how folks under 35 are turning into ‘old, hunched-backed people’

We know that too much sitting and screen time isn’t good for us, both mentally and physically. But there’s nothing quite like seeing actual photo evidence of the adverse effects to make you wanna change your habits immediately.

Recently Iowa-based chiropractor Jake Boyle made a video showing how even the spines in young people under 35 are becoming increasingly more misshapen thanks to constantly looking down and forward while using phones and computers for hours at a time.

“We are all turning into those old hunched over people and there’s a reason behind it,” he says in the clip.

As Dr. Boyle shows X-ray after X-ray of people born from 1992-2011, he points out how the vertebrae in their neck go in the opposite direction of a normal spine.

“All the spinal segments are starting to go backwards like that. That’s what we want, that’s what a good spine looks like,” he says.

Meanwhile, the X-rays show the spine curving forward. Some even have a horn-like growth and the base of the skull known as an External Occipital Protuberance (EOP), which can cause stress and pain to the neck even while lying down.

One X-ray from a 12-year-old even showed early signs of arthritis. Arthritis! In a 12-year-old!

@desmoineschiro Younger generation turning into old hunched over people FAST #spinehealth #xrays #fyp #desmoineschiropractor ♬ original sound – Dr. Jake Boyle

Boyle’s warning: “bring those cellphones up. Otherwise you’ll be an old hunched over person by the time you’re 35.”

Understandably, people were eager for more fixes. Thankfully, Boyle offered a few additional tips in a follow-up video.

A majority of his advice revolved around making lifestyle changes, particularly with how we handled technology.

When working at a computer, for instance, Boyle urges folks to keep the screen at eye level or above, rest your arms on an arm rest and have your keyboard at the same level as your arms. Plus, do your best not to hunch forward and hover over the keyboard.

If you work at a desk for over an hour, Boyle suggests getting up and walking around–something also suggested by neuroscientist Andrew Huberman for different reasons. Basically, getting up and walking works wonders.

Or, when driving, Boyle says to keep the car seat in the straight position, rather than reclined.

Since sleeping is “potentially eight hours a night that you are molding your spine to poor posture,” Boyle recommends paying close attention to improving these habits. Ideally you’d be sleeping on your back on as thin a pillow as possible.

But if not, side-sleeping is okay, “so long as we have a large enough pillow that isn’t cranking our head down, or a thin enough pillow that isn’t cranking our head up,” ans using a pillow between the legs to keep the pelvis well aligned.

The “worst” way to sleep would be on your stomach, since it cranks the head to one side for hours at a time, which rotates and strains the trapezius muscles.

As for what not to do: Boyle says to avoid cracking your own neck, pulling your head forward while performing sit-ups, sitting on your wallet and only carrying a purse (or a kid) on one side.

Lastly, stretches and exercises.

“The Wall Angel”: press your butt, upper back and head against a wall and create a snow angel with your arms, never taking them off the wall. Do this 15-20 times in the morning, afternoon, and night.

Forearm planks: these help stabilize your core, which “helps out with everything in the body,” Boyles says. Just make sure to engage in proper form and not sag or arch. Do these for a minute, placing knees on the ground when needed.

Seated or Standing Rows: which help strengthen the back and retract shoulder blades.

Chin retractions: pretty simple and straightforward. Tuck the chin in towards the neck, then extend the chin up towards the sky. Then reverse the motion. Repeat 15-20 times every time you feel your upper back getting tense or have been at the desk for too long.

@desmoineschiro Every FREE thing you can do to avoid an upper back hunch! #spinehealth #chiropractor #fyp #desmoineschiropractor ♬ original sound – Dr. Jake Boyle

As the truism goes: “we are what we repeatedly do.” Adding even a few of these habits on a consistent basis every day can help offset the damages of our modern world. Just remember that there are no quick, easy fixes. Even for the young folks dealing with spine issues, it’s the result of how many years of formed habits? We know the days of not growing up with an iPad are long gone, after all.

If you’re curious to know more tips from Dr. Boyle, like which cervical correction product is actually worth the hype, you can follow him on TikTok here.

Source: Upworthy
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