You use your neck a lot, which can be easy to take for granted until that mobility is gone. Neck pain can not only make everyday tasks difficult, but in some cases downright impossible. Lifestyle habits can make or break the neck pain cycle. Recognizing what you could be doing to contribute to your neck pain is the first step in the healing process.
The most common predecessor to poor posture stems from maintaining the same position for an extended amount of time. It’s easy to forget how you’re holding yourself when sitting at a desk, watching TV, or checking your phone. Your body is meant for movement, so holding your neck and shoulders in the same position for too long could be causing your neck pain. No matter what you’re doing, make sure that you give yourself a break. This can come in the form of a quick neck roll at your desk, or a 5 minute stroll around the office. This will give your body a break from the strain of sitting in the same spot, and it will also reset your posture.
Poor posture is often a side effect of stagnation. The increased use of smartphones has negatively influenced the tendency to look down. Supporting this position requires a lot of your neck, and puts an enormous strain on neck and shoulder muscles. Tilting your head forward overstretches and weakens your muscles, and can result in neck pain. Though phone use is a common cause, doing (or more appropriately, not doing) anything for an extended period of time can result in neck pain. Here are some ideas to prevent relaxing from becoming a problem:
- Place your laptop or tablet on a pillow on your lap.
- Use a book holder, and then place that on a pillow or table at eye level.
- Use armrests.
- Lift your phone to eye level.
- Place a pillow behind your back to promote good posture.
Setting Up Your Workspace
Desk jobs are a breeding ground for poor posture habits, so it’s important that you create an environment that eases the strain on your neck. Luckily, there are some simple fixes to help prevent neck pain:
- Invest in a Bluetooth device to eliminate the impulse to cradle your phone with your shoulder and neck.
- Place a lumbar support, or pillow, behind your back to improve your posture.
- Keep your computer monitor directly in front of you, and make sure that the screen is at eye level.
- Keep your feet flat on the ground.
Knowing When You Need Help
Remember to seek out professional care if you’re experiencing neck pain. Neck pain can start off as a minor annoyance, but slowly develop into something much more serious. At Arkansas Pioneer, our chiropractic doctors and therapists will identify the cause of your neck pain, and develop a treatment plan to help reduce your pain. Call us today to schedule your free consultation.