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Young people are ‘growing small horns in their skull due to excessive phone use’

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Young people are ‘growing small horns in their skull due to excessive phone use’

Luckily, the horns aren't quite as pronounced as the ones in our illustration (Image: Metro)
Luckily, the horns aren’t quite as pronounced as the ones in our illustration 

Scientists have discovered that young people are developing weird horn-like growths in their skull caused by excessive phone use.

Researchers from Australia found small build-ups of bone in the back of the heads which are the result of bad posture.

It’s believed that bending over a phone can transfer weight to the back of the head, resulting in the growth of bone in nearby ligaments and tendons.

‘You may say it looks like a bird’s beak, a horn, a hook,’ chiropractor David Shahar, first author of a paper discussing the problem,

‘These formations take a long time to develop, so that means that those individuals who suffer from them probably have been stressing that area since early childhood.’

Shahar and colleagues have written two pieces of research about the horns, which are now being discussed online thanks to a recent article on the BBC with the headline:

Young people 'growing horns' due to phone use Picture: Scientific Reports METROGRAB https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2019/06/20/horns-are-growing-young-peoples-skulls-phone-use-is-blame-research-suggests/?noredirect=on&utm_term=.220ecf631851
The ‘horns’ can grow to more than 2cm in size (Picture: Scientific Reports)

Their latest research was published last year and warned of ‘sustained aberrant postures associated with the emergence and extensive use of hand-held contemporary technologies, such as smartphones and tablets’.

The lumps are called enlarged external occipital protuberances and are not harmful in themselves, although they are ‘a portent of something nasty going on elsewhere, a sign that the head and neck are not in the proper configuration’.

Shahar and his team found horns in 41% of the young adults they assessed, with men more affected than women.

The small formations were more than 10 millimetres in size.

If you have the horns, you can probably feel them by reaching around to the bottom of the back of your head.

The researchers advised smartphone users to pay attention to their posture in order to keep the horns at bay.

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