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Studies show that the average person spends about 3 hours a day looking at their mobile device. Although this is fantastic for staying abreast of the latest happenings on Facebook, Instagram and the like, all of that looking down is taking a toll on our necks. In fact, the problem has become such a phenomenon that there’s even a term for it, it is referred to as: Tech Neck.

When we type, text or scroll on our phones, tablets or laptops, our head typically bends at a 45 degree angle. Not only does all of this bending repeatedly squish the delicate skin of the neck (horrifying if you’re someone who Facetimes a lot), but it also puts the neck muscles into a state of laxity. This combination, repeated over and over again throughout the day, is causing our necks to age prematurely. In fact, the neck is fast becoming one of top reasons that patients seek out help from a cosmetic physician such as myself.

Thankfully, today there are any number of non-surgical options for treating the neck such as Thermage, Fraxel, Botox, Fillers and quality Cosmeceuticals.

  • Thermage uses unipolar radio frequency to heat up the deep layers of the dermis, activating new collagen growth which both tightens and lifts the skin, making it look and feel younger.
  • Sun and environmental damage can result in fine lines, wrinkles and brown spots on the neck. The Fraxel Dual laser is an excellent non ablative resurfacing treatment option that is great at eliminating this type of skin damage.
  • Fillers such as Restylane Fine lines and Juvéderm Voluma are extremely effective for softening horizontal neck wrinkles.
  • If you suffer from a “ropey” or tense looking neck, Botox can relax the vertical platysma muscles, making your neck look and feel smoother. Also, Botox can be used to redefine the angle of the jaw with just a few strategic injections at the junction of the neck and jaw. This is referred to as the Nefertiti Lift. Finally, Botox can be used to treat what are referred to as necklace lines, by injecting it alone or in combination with Juvéderm Voluma, directly along these lines.
  • A proper skincare regime that includes a retinol plus an anti-aging serum such as the SkinMedica TNS Essential Serum, GMC Medical A.G.E. Defense cream or GF Advanced Derm Cream can improve fine lines, wrinkles, brown spots and skin texture on the neck.

For most, I recommend a combination of procedures. I also advise you to be more aware of your actions throughout the day — to hold your phone up at eye level as opposed to always looking down at it. If you use a laptop, invest in a stand that raises the screen up so that your neck does not have to bend as much and if you’re reading on a tablet, prop it up on your knees. Protect your neck from outdoor elements with a scarf and sunscreen. These simple changes will go a long way towards keeping your neck looking as young and supple as possible and in keeping with the rest of your appearance. Don’t let your neck betray you and show your age.

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