Smart Phones, Dumb Injuries

As humans, we already do enough dumb stuff to add to our list of things that do our bodies no good.  With the launch of the new iPhone 7 and bigger and better smart phones, that weigh more and are a lot harder to handle than phones of the past I think we will see some subtle injuries arise as a result of you swiping right on tinder too much.

I’m not even joking, before I had met Rachel I had a bit of a flutter on the new-at-the-time dating app. The thing for guys was that you could just keep on swiping right until someone matched with you. I guess karma got me back. I remember flicking with my thumb and out of no where instant RSI. I had to wear a wrist guard when I did exercise to help support it was that bad (Rachel here editing this, and HAHA I had no idea this happened).

“RSI” aka Repetitive Strain Injury, comes from the overuse of tendons, muscles nerves; usually sufferers will get it from the type of work or activity that they do on heavy basis. Hairdressers are most commonly known for it, using scissors and holding other tools for long periods of time.

Along the same lines of RSI, a lot of shoulder problems come into play too from holding up your smart phone.  With the upgraded iPhone 7 Plus, or any large phone (ie Samsung Note), the weight is slightly more than the 7 or the 6 or any smaller device, and this can put an extra load though your rotator cuff and back down the arm and though the elbow joint, eventually causing pain.

I found that now when I want to use my phone on one hand it sits in a man made groove in my pinky finger. The phone is too awkward to hold in one hand comfortably if I’m flicking though Instagram on the toil- um, I mean between sessions. The pain traveling up my finger and the outside of my arm made doing upper body training painful, yes I know that sounds ridiculous, but with Fibromyalgia, any added pain doesn't help me whatsoever.

Last but not least, the head facing down in the screen. You will see it on public transport a lot of the time when people are on the train or bus, yeah those rides can be long and boring, but look at what you are doing now (most probably) head down reading this blog post. Now you are looking up and noticing how stiff your neck is. Is this how we evolve? Our spines curved to this manner? With all the nerves that run from your head to your body, no doubt somewhere in your body, physical or mentally, its probably being impacted from over uses of your devices.

I'm not saying phones are bad and that we are all going to hell, just that we can do some things to help with the injuries.

Here are 5 tips on how to prevent injuries associated with Smart Phones, music devices and tablets:

1. Swap hands on the regular. Giving your hands a rest whether you are watching Rachel on YouTube, typing a message to a friend, change your grip, use your finger to type.

2. Place the phone up against an object or on the wall, you could even get a magnetic case holder.

3. Stretch your nerves. There are a few exercises I like doing, try spreading your fingers apart as much as you can 5 times. I'm sure with the internet at your finger tips you can find a few other stretches and exercises to help with phone injuries.

4. If you feel your body hunching over, stand up and try and touch the sky, or sit up as high as you can and squeeze your shoulder blades together for 10 seconds.

5. If it can wait, let it wait. If you have a long video to watch, just wait till you are home, trying to squint and look at the screen for a long period of time can cause headaches and hurt your joints. It's probably better watching it at home or computer on a more comfortable chair.

I almost forgot two other injuries. Pokémon, and driving, that can end badly for you and whoever is around you. And a less serious one, lying in bed with the phone above your face... don’t drop it, that can hurt a fair bit.

Have you got any niggling injuries that you think may have been caused by the over use of technology?