(ORDO NEWS) — If you are constantly using your smartphone or computer, you are unlikely to be able to avoid this syndrome. Here’s how it can be dangerous and what to do about it.
Most likely, you also have computer neck syndrome. So sit up straight and straighten your neck with your chin up to your throat.
Computer Neck Syndrome is the modern name for neck pain that is caused by repetitive strain on the cervical spine due to computer work, a lot of reading or looking at a mobile phone screen.
When people work at a computer or look at a smartphone screen, the muscles in the back of the neck contract to support the weight of the head. The more a person looks down, the more actively the muscles holding the head will work.
As a result, these muscles tense up and begin to hurt. It is the appearance of this pain that is the main symptom of the “computer neck”. Holding the head in this position strains not only the muscles of the back of the neck, but also the intervertebral discs.
What is dangerous “computer neck”
Doctors warn that this syndrome can cause headaches, pain in the neck, shoulders, and upper back, tingling and numbness in the arms and hands, and even loss of the natural curve of the spine.
Scientific research suggests that there is a clear relationship between the amount of time people spend on their phones and computers and the duration and severity of neck pain.
Here are the signs of tension in the neck due to the computer and smartphone:
- Pain in the neck or upper back: This pain may be localized to one specific area and feel intense or stabbing, or it may cover a wider area, such as from the lower neck to the shoulder.
- Protruding head and rounded shoulders: The muscles of the neck, chest, and upper back can change due to prolonged forward tilt of the head.
- Tingling pain and numbness in the arms and hands associated with irritation and inflammation of the spinal nerves
- Jaw pain can be caused by a misalignment of the cervical spine. A misalignment of the cervical spine and/or muscle imbalances can lead to pain in the jaw or temporomandibular joint.
- Decreased mobility or stiffness in the neck, upper back, and shoulders
- Increased pain with neck flexion: These symptoms tend to get worse when the neck is flexed into the position that initially caused the problem, such as when the person looks down and writes a text message.
- Holding the head in the wrong position for a long time causes imbalance, as the center of gravity of the head shifts further away from the body. This process can lead to muscle imbalances and changes in posture.
What to do if you have signs of “computer neck” syndrome
- Work at your computer in a chair with good lumbar support. Sit with an inclination of 25°-30°.
- Take breaks every 30 minutes and warm up for at least 2 minutes. This will get your blood circulating and your neck in the correct position.
- Contact a physiotherapist: let the doctor prescribe the necessary set of exercises for you, and also give you a massage.
- Watch your posture and do stretching exercises. Be sure to monitor your condition and make sure that nothing hurts. If you do neck stretching or posture exercises and your symptoms get worse, see your doctor.
- Keep your phone at eye level and limit the amount of time you spend in front of a screen.
- Pull up your chin. Pull your head straight back as if you have a double chin. This position allows you to compensate for the effects of constantly tilting your head forward. Try not to tilt your head back and keep your chin tucked in but still parallel to the floor. Hold for 5 seconds, release. Then repeat.
- Pull your shoulders back. Throughout the working day, lift your shoulders up and back while throwing your head back.
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