Health Care

Young People Are Growing Horns Due to Mobile Phones, Technology

Young People Are Growing Horns Due to Mobile Phones, Technology”

A new study suggests that young people could be developing "horn-like spikes", aka bone spurs, on their skulls as a result. The weight transfer that causes the buildup can be compared to the way the skin thickens into a callus as a response to pressure or abrasion.

Researchers have noticed horn like abnormalities projecting out if younger adults skulls as they happen to use an excess of smartphones in their daily lives.

Health experts warn of "text neck", and doctors have begun treating "texting thumb", which is not a clearly defined condition but bears resemblance to carpal tunnel syndrome.

The researchers have suggested that the spurs could be related to the "hand held technological revolution", and specifically the poor posture brought on by using devices such as smartphones.

It found that 41% had developed a 10 to 30 millimetre bony lump at the back of their skull.

Experts give the report mixed reviews, noting that the study is based on looking back at X-rays taken in the past, lacks a control group and can not prove cause and effect.

So far, the odd new bits of anatomy have garnered all kinds of names, including head horns, phone bones, spikes, or weird bumps.

David Shahar, the first author of the paper, is a chiropractor and the recent recipient of a Ph.D in biomechanics.

"That is up to anyone's imagination", he told The Washington Post.

Before you freak out and say "this can't be right", don't worry.

Along with practising non-traditional medicine, Shahar is known to be the creator of Dr. Posture, an online store that promotes products and notably "three easy steps" to "look and feel you best" - first, watching the doctor's webinar, then downloading at-home exercises to stretch your back and neck, and finally sleeping with a specially tailored Thoracic Pillow, which the researcher has trademarked and has been selling for $195.

Bending the head forward for long periods of time could, in theory, cause a bone spur to form, said Evan Johnson, assistant professor and director of physical therapy at NewYork-Presbyterian Och Spine Hospital. You're not going to wake up one day with horns on your head.

The horn itself may not be much of a problem, says co-author Mark Sayers. Kids these days are growing 'enlarged external occipital protuberances'.

Yet another study made the case that the cause isn't genetic, but a result of the modern posture of staring down at tiny screens.

And the Scientific Reports paper, published the month before, zoomed out to consider a sample of 1,200 X-rays of subjects in Queensland, ages 18 to 86.

Sayers stated that they found that this growth progressively decreased as people aged in their research. Since this isn't usually seen in young people, they chose to do more research.

That we are contorting ourselves in service to our gadget obsessions - to the point that we are growing horn-beak-hook things in the back of our heads - just doesn't seem like something that ends well. "What happens with technology?" he said. "That requires an adaptive process to spread the load".



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