The One Reason Why Selfies Might Be More Damaging To Your Health Than You Might Think

November 11, 2016 by Sara Alderman
shefinds | Style

Here’s one more reason why social media is the worst: selfie elbow. Yes, this condition is real, at least according to Today host Hoda Kotb. Her doctor actually diagnoses her with selfie elbow after she complained of pain. “I went to the orthopedist and he said, ‘Are you playing tennis or ping-pong?’ And of course I’m not, so I told him I was taking selfies,” she told “When you take the picture, your arm is up, bent in a weird way and you just click, click, click—think about how many you take: 20, 30, or 40. Selfie elbow, everyone has it!”

While selfie elbow might seem ridiculous (like, HOW many selfies are you actually taking if your elbow is that sore?!), it makes sense that the repetitive strain on your arm would result in some sort of pain. And that’s the key here, doing the same unnatural motion over and over. Dr. Jordan Metzl, a sports medicine physician at New York’s Hospital for Special Surgery, explains to Elle, “We used to see it with Blackberry phones—it was a real thing. People would get tendinitis in their thumb because they were on their Blackberries all the time. You get tennis elbow from playing too much tennis—or having poor form—and you get selfie elbow from taking too many selfies. You put too much stress on the muscle and it irritates the area where the muscle comes off the bone and you get this inflammatory response.”

He recommends taking Advil or Motrin for the inflammation, as well as icing and stretching. We say suck it up or get a selfie stick. I mean, it’s not like you’re going to stop taking selfies because of a little pain, amirite?? Gotta give the people what they want.

[Photo: Shutterstock]


Sara Alderman has covered topics from fashion to beauty and beyond.

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