Are you glued to your smartphone all the time? Then you are likely to be affected by a new condition called the ‘smartphone face.’ No, your face doesn’t take the shape of a smartphone, but too much looking down in your phone results in a drooping jawline. So, basically use of mobile devices like phones or laptop that make you bend your head downwards for prolonged hours can lead to losing the elasticity of the facial skin. This problem is being coined as ‘smartphone face.’ Dr. Mervyn Patterson of the Woodford Medical group explains this new condition, and says, "If you sit for hours with your head bent slightly forward, staring at your smartphone or laptop screen, you may shorten the neck muscles and increase the gravitational pull on the jowl area, leading to a drooping jawline."
Blame your double chins on your mobile devices (Image Credit: Getty Images)
In April, the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) released its statistics which claimed that chin augmentation is the fastest growing plastic surgery trend among all major demographics and increased video chat technology could be one of reasons for the rise, among other reasons. The statistics reveal that chin augmentation grew more than breast augmentation, Botox and liposuction combined in the last year. The procedure has seen a rise in both women and men, and also in all patients over the age of 20, while the largest increase has been seen in patients age 40 or older.
Times of India spoke to a few medical professionals to find more about this condition. Mohan Thomas, who is a senior cosmetic surgeon, said that smartphones are known to cause chronic upper back and neck problems, like kyphotic deformities and neck strain, which is generally due to the user constantly looking down to look at the screen for long hours. However he adds that there is no consensus on the smartphone face terminology and a thorough study is still required to be conducted on a larger population to confirm if the condition is due to smartphones only. Dr Apratim Goel, a dermatologist reveals, “So far, I have noticed an increase of 20-25 cases a month with such concerns, especially among the youth. However, I would not put the entire blame of this concern on the growing use of technology."
Dr Meenakshi Agarwal, a cosmetic surgeon, agrees that the number of cases of youth inquiring about chinplants and tightening of skin around the chin have definitely increased from roughly 10 to 12 percent last year to around 20 percent this year. It isn’t clear whether the ‘problem’ is necessarily due to smartphones, though it is one of the closest possible reason. Chinplants cost you a relatively big sum, and TOI also suggests some simple yoga exercises like the Cobra pose or Bhujangasana which helps toning the neck and removes double chin. It helps keep the face youthful while the Lion roaring pose or Simhagarjasana tightens and tones the whole body and facial skin.