The posture of your head can have a big effect on your overall health.

You feel exhausted at the end of day, your neck always hurts and you have frequent headaches.

If you suffer from forward head posture, also known as “anterior head carriage”, you may suffer from these conditions and others as a result.

When your head is positioned correctly, the opening of your ear is centered over your shoulder. If your ear opening is off center and it is located to the front of the shoulder, then you have anterior head posture as illustrated on the picture below:

For every inch that your head is off center or forward from your shoulder, an average of 10-20 additional pounds is added on the muscles in your neck and upper back, making them work harder just to keep your head centered!

In today’s lifestyle, it is common see this condition. For example, you will see people working over their computers all day, children watching television and playing video games, students carrying heavy backpacks (see our article on backpack safety), people cradling their mobile phones between their ears and shoulders, those who drive or sit for prolonged periods of time can all contribute to anterior head posture.

Unfortunately, if left untreated, this condition can cause compression of the discs of your neck, thus leading to herniated discs and/or arthritis as well as weakness and muscle spasms of certain neck and upper back muscles.

So what can be done about this

Make an appointment to see a chiropractor and/or physiotherapist. Therapeutic care from any of these therapists have proven to be effective in reversing anterior head posture, reducing pain and preventing further deterioration of the spine.

-Keep your child’s backpack weight to no more than 10-15% of their body weight. (see our article on “Choosing Proper Backpacks”)

-Get up and stretch every 15-30 minutes if you sit at a desk all day.

-Limit the amount of time your child spends watching television, playing video games or using the mobile phone.

-Focus more on your posture, making sure you are sitting up straight with your head in an upright position.

-Sleep on a proper pillow to maintain the proper curve in your neck, such as the Chiroflow Pillow

If you are concerned about anterior head posture or you have neck and back pain, headaches, muscle weakness or tension in the neck and shoulders; make an appointment to get assessed by a chiropractor or physiotherapist or call us to see how we can help.