5 WAYS TO PREVENT TECH NECK
Technology has changed just about every aspect of our lives. Most people can’t live without their smartphones, tablets, smartwatches, and laptops. They are just part of everyday life because they keep us all connected.
However, the increased use of technology has raised concern for postural health. Whether you’re hunched over on your computer or looking down at your phone, your neck and spine are being put through constant stress. Over long periods of time, maintaining a head-forward posture can lead to muscle strain, disc injury, nerve impingement and arthritic changes of the neck—and the potential for developing ongoing neck and shoulder pain, headaches, and pain radiating down the arms. This repetitive stress injury is commonly known as “tech neck” and it affects many people.
To prevent tech neck from progressing or becoming chronic, here are some tips from CORE Physical Therapy:
Correct Your Posture
This can be easier said than done, but it is the best way to prevent neck, back and shoulder pain from technology use. Try to stay upright with proper back and neck alignment as much as you can and it will help reduce the pain and stress.
Set Time Limits and Take Breaks
Another good way to help prevent tech neck is to set time limits for technology use. Try not to stay in an unnatural position longer than absolutely necessary and take breaks as often as you can. Plus, taking time away from technology is simply a good way to reset your body and mind.
Use Helpful Devices
Tablet holders, phone stands, standing desks, yoga balls, and other equipment can help you stay productive and connected to your technology while maintaining a better overall body posture that will preserve your neck, shoulders, and back.
Try Stretches and Exercises
Taking the time to stretch your neck and surrounding muscles will really make a difference. There are many simple exercises and stretches you can do that will help. One example is called the “chin tuck.” This can be done by sitting up straight and tucking your chin all the way down toward your neck for five slow repetitions. Do this once an hour throughout the day and it will help strengthen the postural muscles. When it comes to stretches and exercises, it’s best to visit a physical therapy clinic like CORE. Our physical therapists can customize a program to heal your aches.
Listen to Your Body
If you’re experiencing pain, numbness or headaches, there might be a more serious issue going on. Our therapists at CORE Physical Therapy are guaranteed to help you make changes to reduce or eliminate any head-forward posture that is straining your neck.
Remember, even if you’re not experiencing pain, you can still make some postural changes to prevent tech neck from becoming an issue. Contact CORE Physical Therapy for more information about treatments and rehabilitation before those minor issues turn into major physical problems.