An increasing number of children are developing a condition called “Game boy back”. This problem is more common with 8-18 years old. It causes curvature of spine and slipped herniated discs as a result of children sitting hunched over game consoles, smart phones, I Pads/tablets for hours on end.
Such symptoms were seen more than 100 years ago when child labor was common, where kids got weak backs, but now they are getting it from their devices. Some of the Doctors around the world have said that the bone responds in the same way as wood. So if the bone is forced in a certain direction for a long time it ends up growing in that direction.
What can be done?
- Practice good posture while playing games
- Problem is not the devices and the answer is not to ban them completely. Instead more attention given to good posture as well as good sitting habits.
- Postural belts
- Postural exercises, thoracic exercises to improve the posture
- Stretching exs and strengthening exercises for neck and upper back.
Try few of these exercise at home:
Shoulder retractions: bring your shoulder blades together
Shoulder rotations: roll your shoulders back
Pectoralis stretch/W stretch: place hands on doorframe at shoulder height & lean forward.