We all use technology every day, whether it is a phone, tablet, or computer. As more and more people are working from home, our connection to this technology has become even stronger. This has many benefits, especially now, but there are also some concerns that arise from additional use. The frequent use of these devices has led to neck, back, and shoulder problems in many people due to the hunching, bending, and straining that occurs when we look down at our screens. Without our ergonomic office chairs and lunchtime walks around the office, more and more people are searching for a “chiropractor near me” to help with these physical ailments.
Understanding “Tech Neck”
The impact of technology on our physical bodies is not just hypothetical- it has become so common that there is a common term for it now- tech neck. This refers to the impacts on the neck and back from a hunched-over posture that is common when people stare at a screen all day. It is sometimes called “text neck” but is a result of computer and tablet use, too. Whether sitting or standing, it is natural for people to hunch their shoulders forward and lean their heads down in order to look at screens. This poor posture can lead to a variety of problems that go from occasionally annoying to chronic or even debilitating. The more you engage in this posture, the vertebrae in your spine can become weakened or strained, along with muscles, tendons, and the surrounding tissue. Ultimately, this can mean the spine becomes misaligned when the vertebrae in your neck and upper back slip out of place, putting pressure on the surrounding nerves.
For every inch you lean your head forward, your neck experiences an additional 10 pounds of pressure. When you think about the way you may bend over a keyboard or phone, you can see how this might wear out your neck or cause pain. After prolonged behavior like this, you may notice tenderness, stiffness, or a loss of range of motion in your neck. Headaches and a tingling or numbness may also be signs of tech neck.
How Chiropractic Helps
When you start experiencing symptoms of tech neck, your first concern may be neck pain relief. Until you are feeling less discomfort, you may struggle to do any activity that can help re-strengthen your neck. A chiropractor near you will be able to perform gentle adjustments that relieve these immediate symptoms. From there, they can begin the work of addressing the root causes of your pain. Chiropractors focus on the overall musculoskeletal system and the spine’s impact on the body, so they will ensure alignment in order to prevent a variety of symptoms.
As a natural and non-invasive treatment option, chiropractic care does not rely on medications or surgical procedures to relieve pain, but on repairing the root cause of your pain. In addition to behavior changes, this allows your body to begin from a place of alignment and prevents the issue from worsening or reoccurring.
Preventing Tech Neck
Whether you’ve not yet experienced tech neck or you’re on the mend from the condition, the best way to manage the risk is by preventing it from occurring in the first place. As we continue to work from home, there are adjustments you can make to your environment and habits to stop the issue from cropping up.
The way your home office is set up can play a critical role. If you don’t have a dedicated space, you may be working from your couch or another chair, but this doesn’t mean you have to be uncomfortable. Positioning your monitors and other devices at eye level is crucial to prevent slouching forward. If you tend to have bad posture, you can add lumbar support, even with just rolled towels, to improve spinal support.
Without coworkers around, it can be easy to get into a “zone” and sit staring at your computer for hours. Set reminders to get up and take breaks throughout the day where you don’t look at your devices. Even just pacing around the room can give your body some needed relief. Doing some simple stretches can also be helpful.
Visiting a chiropractor near you in College Park can help you realize the benefits of chiropractic care while making working from home easier. AICA College Park has a team of chiropractors that work in collaboration with other specialists to provide comprehensive care that targets your pain and offers long-lasting relief.