The title may sound odd, but if you have neck, upper or low back pain a good question to ask is "where is your head?" Next time you are in the mall take a seat and watch people walk around. Most of them will have the head in front of the body. This is called an anterior head list. There are many causes for this, cell phones, poor posture in the car or at the desk, recliner chairs or car accidents. An anterior head is when the head is sitting forward on the body.
What does an anterior head effect? Many things. Think of holding a bowling ball in your hand with your arm outstretched. Soon your back muscles will become fatigued and sore. Same with the head, although you have been holding that head forward for years, most likely. The long term effects are neck pain, upper back pain (due to rolling of the shoulders and over use of the upper back muscles) headaches (due to the upper cervical vertebra (neck bones) not working properly) and even low back pain due to the extra stress on the body from leaning forward. Ultimately you can even herniate a disc in the neck due to the anterior wear and tear on the disc and that can lead to surgery.
What can you do? There are many home stretches you can do for a few minutes a day to help bring the head back to neutral. These can be done at your desk, in your car or even when you are walking around the mall. You can get a simple foam roller and start rolling out the thoracic spine (mid back) a couple times a day for just a minute at a time. Also chiropractic care works well to mobilize the lower cervcial spine and mid thoracic spine to help you return the head over the shoulders.
Have someone take a picture of you from the side and see how you look. Where is your head? If it is forward on the body you may also have headaches, neck and back pain. If so chiropractic care can help.
My name is Greg Beasley and I have been practicing for over 23 years. Sixteen of those here in Everett at Advanced Chiropractic. It would be my pleasure to help you if you have any of the above symptoms