A Slip Disc at the Neck – How it happened (Part 2)

Thank you for all your love! My Slip Disc op went very well, and I’m now resting at home! My bimbo worry is now if the scar would show obviously on the neck! (yes, the surgeon did the cut from my neck! More about that later!) I’m drinking the bottles of Birds Nests that many friends have given me, and applying creams and lotions to lessen the scar.

Now for my community service duties. How did I get this Slip Disc? You know, stories of lower back slip discs always happen when someone had a bad fall, or accident, or simply carried something extremely heavy at a weird angle. Usually there’s a significant moment that causes it. For my slip disc, it is possible I got it cos of lifting weights at the gym… although my gym instructor was present at all times, and there really wasn’t a significant moment that caused it. The doctor said it is very likely due to Poor Posture.

I must give you some background. My mum is a stickler for good posture. Since young, she tells me the nursery rhyme about Mr Crooked who lives in the Crooked house. My sis and I must always stand straight, sit straight, and never hunch. So I dare say my back is pretty straight! Alas, her nursery rhyme didn’t include the crooked neck!

This is what happened. The doctor explained that in recent years, a slip disc at the neck is getting more common because of our very bad posture when we work with the LAPTOP and when we use our MOBILE DEVICES. Here’s my lovely demonstrator:

Mobile Posture Wrong

Laptop Posture Wrong

You see, before the laptop became common, we used desktops, with huge Monitor Screens. We could sit up right, neck at 90 degrees and still do work. The screens are at eye level, and there’s no strain at all on our necks. Then came the portable Laptops. It is so low, that we bend our necks to type, to scrutinise at the data on the screen, and this goes on 9-5 daily.

Couple that with our mobile phone… I don’t watch Korean dramas on my phone. (actually, I don’t watch Korean dramas. Period.) but if I did, the disc would have slipped sooner! But I do lots of messaginge, check my mails, read articles etc on my phone. So there you go, the bent neck!

Well, the doctor said, over time, when we keep our necks so bent, the disc starts slipping… … In fact, in layman terms, he said, starting from the 20s, the disc can start loosening. And it peaks when one reaches 40s. Thereafter, the incidences of it happening reduces. This is because the older you are, your disc starts hardening, and it no longer slips. (Very few people have slip discs after 45!) This is explained simply with this Bell Curve:

 

My work is largely administrative, so I sit long long hours at the desk, over my laptop. I’m not one who drinks coffee/tea, or even water. So I hardly get off my seat to get my drink or go pee. The only time I look up from my laptop is when I start feeling achy, or I need to make phone calls or talk to someone. Through the years, the disc started slipping and slipping and sometime in Nov, it slipped and touched my nerves, which gave me a somewhat permanent pain in my left arm.

And that was how it all started! All three doctors I saw told me, our kids would get it worse if they don’t take care of their postures! Imagine the kids now starting on their mobile phones in primary school. They don’t even talk to each other when they hang out together… they text! You can imagine how the graph would look like for them!!

Now that the op is done, and I’m on MC at home, I work on my laptop with a stand – to ensure the screen is at eye level, and I put a privacy screen on my mobile, so that I can confidently hold it up – to ensure the phone is also at eye level.

Correct Postures

Please please take care of that neck!  Spread the word… it all starts with your posture. Ohhh and a Food for thought: When you sleep, if you pillow is too high, the posture’s not right too!

Follow me on my final post when I share with you what the doctor did, and the new stuff I have at home to ensure the other discs don’t slip!