Whether you’re working from home or simply spending more time video chatting with friends and family during the pandemic, chances are you’re relying on screens more than ever.
With all that time watching and scrolling, symptoms of “tech neck” can quickly creep up, making screen time a pain.
“Tech neck emerges from the body position we often subconsciously assume when staring at screens.
Patients with tech neck who often present with the following:
- neck and upper back pain and stiffness
- trap pain
- muscle spasms
- localized shoulder pain
“Your task is to sit up straight, not to be held straight.”
How to Prevent Tech Neck
Since the start of the pandemic, Cooper has seen an escalation in patients with signs and symptoms of tech neck. While people are growing more aware of the condition it deserves more attention.
Most people don’t think about the way they are sitting or take remedial action until they are in pain. Because it can take months to improve neck and or upper back pain, and even longer to improve one’s posture, it’s easy to form bad habits in our posture while using our devices.
He points out that most people do not have the ergonomically correct chairs made for operating on a computer. Plus, working on laptops instead of desktops can cause you to lean over the screen.
Not to mention, the stress everyone is under in these uncertain times can lead to increased physical stress in your body and elevated instances of tech neck.
“Never bend your head. Always hold it high. Look the world straight in the eye.”
Following Ways Can Help You Improve Tech Neck-:
1. Pay Attention to Your Posture
Sitting with your shoulders against the back of your chair and placing your keyboard on your lap to prevent you from bringing your chin and shoulders forward.
Most people lean over their desk to type and this, to me, is the main cause of tech neck.
“The quickest way to change your emotional state is to change your body.”
2. Take Breaks
Take a rest from the computer every 30 minutes to an hour.
“During these breaks, stretch the neck and shoulders. For tech neck due to constant smartphone use, take regular breaks and useless. If viewing movies or doing other activities for a long time, one can get a cellphone holder so the phone can be placed at eye level.
Frequent movement and stretching are very advantageous for the body. It keeps the blood running and limits muscles and joints from getting stiff. If you leave your neck in one position too long, you can generate pain and discomfort. And if not corrected, after a while, one can develop serious medical issues that result in extended or permanent pain and disability.
3. Perform Stretches
Every hour, Cooper suggests performing Bruegger exercises. To do this, sit up straight at the end of your chair with your arms extended out and behind your body. Squeeze your shoulder blades together, with your palms facing up, and tuck in your chin so your head is over your body. Hold this position for 30 seconds at a time while taking deep breaths. Then repeat three to four times.
Bands can also be used to improve your upper back by doing exercises like scapula rows.
Tech neck causes an elongation with a delicacy to the posterior neck muscles. Anyone with a tech neck should do the opposite. Stretch the front part of your neck and strengthen, not stretch, the back part of your neck.
“A strong confident person can rule the room with knowledge, personal style, attitude and great posture.”
How to Treat Tech Neck
It can be treated with a mixture of physical therapy exercises that strengthen the upper back and neck muscles, as well as stretches for the anterior shoulders.
Additionally, chiropractic adjustments can help with any fixed joints and massage, and acupuncture can help loosen tight muscles.
“Postural exercises such as yoga, Pilates and martial arts are about avoiding pain and injury as much as helping you feel good. Attractive men and women have good posture.”
Most simple interventions can improve signs short term, but patients need to confirm that their continued use of computers, tablets, and smartphones is causing this pain, and a lifestyle change is the most effective approach for this disorder.