If you use a lot of technology, you could have tech neck. Tech neck is just as it sounds. The name refers to neck pain associated with using tech for hours. Many people don't realize how technology use can affect their necks. You may not realize that using your computer, tablet, or phone is the source of your neck pain. Keep reading to learn more about tech neck and how it may be the source of your neck problems.
How Does Technology Contribute to Neck Pain?
Your neck primarily supports your heavy head. Most people don't realize how much their head weighs until they get neck fatigue. When you keep your head tilted for hours, it strains the bones and muscles in your neck. The higher the tilt angle, the higher the strain. Each increase in angle multiplies the weight pressure on your neck.
Many people tilt their heads significantly while using tech, especially with hand-held devices. You may not realize how much you look down at your device or how often you use it. While it only takes a few seconds to read a text, doing it multiple times a day can add up to strain on your neck.
What Are Tech Neck Symptoms?
One of the most obvious symptoms is feeling strained around the neck and shoulders. However, other symptoms may be harder to identify. For example, you may also have headaches and jaw pain. If your case is severe, you may even have arm numbness and pain.
Can Tech Neck Lead to Serious Problems?
Generally, tech neck is more uncomfortable than a serious problem. However, without intervention, some people may acquire more concerning neck issues. Tech neck is sometimes associated with arthritis, pinched nerves, and bone spurs. Some people may even experience a ruptured disk from long-term tech neck without intervention.
How Can One Reduce Tech Neck?
You can reduce tech neck by improving your posture and being mindful of your head position. Try to reduce the time you move your head forward to look at your device. If possible, keep computer monitors at around eye level. If you sit at a desk, try sitting at a slight recline to keep your neck at a neutral angle. Use a headrest or high back chair if possible.
If you use a lot of tech, pay attention to your neck. In some ways, you have control over the issue. However, if the neck pain continues despite taking all precautions, see your doctor. They can examine you to ensure you don't have a serious neck or spine issue. The doctor can also advise you on further ways to reduce neck strain. Contact a neck pain doctor for more information.