Tech Neck: Tips to Prevent Technology-Related Neck Pain

December 10, 2018

In today’s world, many workers spend six to eight hours a day on a computer, tablet, or cell phone.

These devices can be great for connecting you to the world and allowing you to complete tasks more efficiently, but they can also lead to chronic neck pain if you are not careful. Here are some tips you can utilize to prevent technology-related neck pain:

 

Maintain Good Posture

 

While you are working away on your computer, it can be difficult to remember to keep your posture in check. Fortunately, there is an easy way to improve your posture: place a rolled up towel, sweatshirt, or small pillow in between your lower back and the back of your chair. This will give you the lumbar support you need so that you do not experience back and neck pain by the end of the day.

 

Keep Devices at Eye Level

 

If at all possible, keep all of your electronic devices at eye level so that you are not constantly bending your neck at a downward angle. Elevate your desktop monitor to eye level, and if you feel the need to work on your laptop on the sofa, purchase a couch desk to keep the monitor elevated. Additionally, when you are using your phone, hold it as close to eye level as possible instead of looking down at it.

 

Use a Headrest

 

Using a chair without a headrest is not only uncomfortable, but it can lead to chronic neck pain. Swap out your current chair for one that has a headrest, and while you are working, make sure that the back of your head is pressed against the headrest to prevent you from flexing your neck downward.

 

Stretch Regularly

 

For every hour that you are working at your computer, you should take a five-minute break to stretch. Stand up, clasp your hands behind your back, and hold this position for ten to twenty seconds. After that, use your right hand to gently pull your head to the right and hold that position for ten to twenty seconds, then repeat on the other side.

 

Exercise

 

Regular exercise has countless health benefits, one of which is preventing neck pain. Adding thirty minutes of yoga to your routine will stretch those neck muscles and relieve any tension that you are building up at your computer. Or, if yoga is not your style, doing cardio and lifting moderate weights can also provide the same benefits.

 

Set Time Limits

 

It is very easy to lose track of time while you are writing code or scrolling through Instagram on your phone. Constantly bending your neck forward to look at those screens for a long period of time can wreak havoc on your neck health. Whenever you first get on your phone or computer, set a time limit for yourself. When the timer goes off, get up, take a break, and stretch before you get back to it.