Wednesday, April 20, 2016

News You Can't Use: From Text Neck to Blackberry Thumb

With affordable high quality health care now available to every American there has never been a better time to suffer injuries and assorted misadventures. Unfortunately, an increasingly sedentary lifestyle the revolves around sitting for hours and pecking at tiny screens isn't exactly Mountain Dew commercial material. Still, it appears it is possible to suffer life-ruining ailments and enter the exciting and sexy hospital industry anyway. You might get the "Text Neck" or the "Instagram Inner Rot" or even full-blown "Pathetic Human Jelly Enslaved By Lame Technology and Racing Toward the Chilling Embrace of the Grave."

Smartphones. The majority of us now own one, and we can't comprehend how those who don't live without them.

I feel that "Smartphones" is enough for a complete sentence all by itself. I mean, am I right or what? They guide and nourish us, they crush our imaginary candy and how could anyone possibly live without one?

We use them as alarm clocks, calendars, personal organisers, entertainment systems, games consoles, online messengers and, yes, even phones.

Cue hearty Ed McMahon laughter.

Just yesterday, a South Korean study suggested that the excessive use of smartphones by children is causing them to become cross-eyed.

Stop that, it'll get stuck that way.

It doesn't end there. Researchers and health professionals have identified several physical pitfalls of smartphone use in recent years, all on the rise as we steadily transform into a nation of 'smombies'.

How would you survive the "smombie" apocalypse? By setting down the portable Skinner Box? Don't talk crazy.

So keep your smartphone firmly in your pocket, ignore the bleeps and bings of notifications, and instead inform yourself of the dangers of these pocket-sized perils.

Buckle up, tuck it in, keep both hands visible and prepare to enter a world beyond your wildest dreams.

The first of these cyber-syndromes is Blackberry thumb. Named after one of the first smartphones to have a Qwerty keyboard, this repetitive strain injury is caused by overusing mobile phones to send emails and texts.

If I became unable to do my double-thumbed Trump Salute I don't think I'd be able to continue functioning in society. The tragic inability to "trigger" others, I blame it on those tiny keyboards.

Blackberry thumb is no laughing matter.

My brother died that way.

So worried were working professionals, in fact, that back in 2011, co-founder of the Roberts Jackson solicitors Karen Jackson warned employers that they should expect to receive a series of lawsuits from bum-thumbed staff claiming compensation.

Every generation gets the "Power Line Lawsuit Scare" it deserves.

But our thumbs are undoubtedly much busier than they were before the dawn of the smartphone

Uh...yeah. Don't be so sure about that.

And researchers at the University of Zurich recently discovered that the part of our brain responsible for thumb movement (the somatosensory cortex, obviously) has actually begun to grow in the heads of frequent phone-users. 

Mental retention of physical does it work?

Prolonged mobile phone use has been found to cause the disconcertingly vague-sounding  'cubital tunnel syndrome'.

Stop being so vague, Doc! I'm ready for the horrible truth about my busted hands.

As we hold our phones up to our ears, our elbow presses together and the resulting pressure can damange the cubital tunnel, a channel which allows the ulnar nerve – your 'funny bone' nerve – to travel over the elbow and down to your hands. Decreased blood flow and nerve ischemia are also side effects of those long phone calls we love so much.

You could get that on an old-time rotary phone. I thought this was supposed to be about exciting new inventions hurting us, not the terrible legacy of Alexander Graham Bell. Booo!!!!! Refund!!!!!

'Blackberry thumb' and 'Smartphone pinky' may attack individual digits, but 'Text claw' strikes at your hand as a whole.

Let me tell you something, when I slap on the Text Claw, a claw that can crush most sports balls, you'll beg me to stop the agony. And that. Is. All. The People! Need!!! To Know!!!!!!!

Brain claw!!!

Text claw develops because many people work on their phones in a position that’s not natural for the thumb, wrist or finger joints.  

The only unnatural phone act is that which one can not perform.

In 2013, before 4G was rolled out across the country, network provider O2 surveyed their customers and found that 43 per cent of smartphone users had suffered from bad hand pain in their palms and wrists over the previous 12 months.

Something else might be putting stress on those wrists and palms. I'm just saying.

Aaron Zehner is the author of "The Foolchild Invention" available in paperback and e-book format. Read free excerpts here and here.

No comments:

Post a Comment