01 May Suffering from Tech-related Strains?
Using mobile devices excessively has led to an increase in strains and tendinitis from “tech neck” to tennis elbow (no tennis required). Urgent care doctors at Mend Clinic have noticed this trend, which can happen from repetitive movements (like using a laptop). There has been an increase in strains from the neck and shoulders down through the back thanks to long hours in the Digital Era.
It’s unlikely that anyone will give up their technology obsession, which is why it’s important to treat address your posture and treat back/spine and shoulder strains quickly while also shifting how we work with technology. Long-term tech-related postures can lead to spinal disc injuries and irritation of the nerves. Adjusting our habits and posture is key to preventing minor injuries as well as permanent, lasting injuries.
One of the best ways to keep these injuries in check is to set time limits for looking down at devices. The body needs a break every 15 – 20 minutes for at least three minutes. There are apps available to help you keep track of breaks and time spent with technology. However, if frequent breaks just aren’t possible for you, changing how you interact with screens can be a better solution. Having screens at eye level instead of on or near your lap can prevent some injuries.
Proper posture for the cervical area means the chin is parallel with the floor and the crown of the head is aligned with the cervical spine. If you were to stand against a wall, both your heels and the back of your head should touch while your chin remains neutral and parallel to the floor. However, if most people try this posture, it feels very strange. It’s common to feel like the head is too far back. This is a sign of just how far we are as a society from proper posture.
Tech-related injuries don’t happen suddenly. It builds up over time and with prolonged poor posture. However, once it extends into a pain in the arms and fingers, that’s a sign that more serious damage may be happening. Those with other related lifestyle triggers include people who wear backpacks regularly or are a physical laborer. Using a rolling suitcase instead of a backpack and making sure proper lifting techniques are used at work while avoiding twisting can help minimize cervical pain and injuries.