How Your Phone Can Hurt Your Bones

people looking at cell phones

If you take a look around you, it’s pretty hard to deny that screen dependence is a big problem in society today. Texting while driving. Strolling while scrolling. Did you know they can also be hard on your hands and wrists?

All of the motions needed to interact with your devices can take a toll on your joints over time. And since we care about every bone in your body, TOC has some recommendations on how to reduce your screen time, and give your hands and wrists a well-deserved break: 

  • Go play outside. Fresh air is good for you and it’s a healthy replacement activity to sitting around on a computer, tablet, or gaming system. Keep moving and feel better! 
  • Set limits. Put boundaries around how much time you spend on screens. This frees up time for other enjoyable activities and helps you be intentional about how much wear and tear you put on your joints. 
  • Use an app. Try voice dictation – it can help reduce repetitive motions that can be damaging. Also, set time limit reminders for yourself so you aren’t on your phone too much. It’s counterintuitive that technology could be the solution to reducing technology, but there are apps available that can help you enforce the limits that you set for yourself, or at least be mindful of how much time you are spending on screens. 
  • Prioritize. Spend time thinking about what is really important to you and if screen time supports those goals (or not). Think about how much time you invest in screens, what kinds of things you want to be doing, and if the amount of time you spend on screens supports that goal. 

Putting the screens down more frequently can be beneficial for your health, wellness, and relationships. Through healthy alternatives, setting and enforcing limits, and looking at what matters most to you, you can achieve a positive change for your life and your body. Your wrists and hands will thank you!

(This article originally appeared in TOC’s Spring 2019 newsletter.)