Evaluation of Changes in the Function of Cervical Spine of Smart Device Users
Background. With the growing use of smart devices, concerns have also increased about musculoskeletal problems associated with the prolonged use of smart devices (Jung et al., 2016). Prolonged and frequent use of the smart device with the severe head flexion posture could be one of the main contributing factors to the prevalence of neck and shoulders pain symptoms of smart device users (Alfaitouri, Altaboli, 2019).
Purpose – determine changes in the function of cervical spine of smart device users.
Methods. Twenty-six individuals participated in the study (14 females, 12 males). Dependency on smart devices, active range of motion and muscle strength of cervical spine were evaluated for the participants.
Results. Active flexion, extension, left and right lateral flexion, left and right rotation range of motion of cervical spine were significantly different between individuals who are at no risk for dependency (NPrR group), at high risk for dependency (DPrR group) and individuals that are dependent (Pr group) on using smart devices. Strength of cervical spine flexor muscles was significantly lower in Pr group than NPrR group (p < 0.05). Strength of neck flexor muscles in Pr group was 6.2 ± 2.5 kg, while in NPrR group it was 9.7 ± 4.1 kg.
Conclusions. Individuals that have been using smart devices for over 3 years and have dependency on smart devices have significantly lower active range of motion of the neck and neck flexor muscle strength than individuals who are at no risk of the dependency and individuals at high risk of the dependency on smart devices.
Keywords: smart devices, cervical spine, range of motion, muscles strength, function.
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