How Neck Pain Develops and What You Can Do to Reduce It
scenario: you’ve been glued to your phone for a few minutes. You start
feeling a tinge in the back of your neck and you finally let your head
up for a moment. Your neck feels awful. There’s so much pain in the back
that you start moving it all around trying to gain relief but it just
doesn’t seem to be enough. What’s worse is you feel like you’ve got a
headache and your eyes are burning a little from the screen time.
How many times has
this happened to you? How many times do you think this happens to the
average American on a regular basis? When sitting, driving, reading, or
performing some other activity of daily living it’s customary for us to
hang our heads or lean to one side. It seems like nothing at first,
you’re so accustomed to the position that you may not feel it until a
few minutes in. At that point it feels like a dull pain in the back of
your neck and if you just look upward or tilt your head back it’ll be
It doesn’t seem
important now, but this is the beginning of more serious issues. The
constant arching, leaning, or hanging of the neck over to perform
regular tasks will add up and eventually land you in a hospital room.
You could be days away from a pinched nerve or you’re steadily
developing forward head posture (FHP) and you’d never know.
In case you haven’t
heard about forward head posture (FHP), think of it as the head and neck
protruding forward. Next time you look in the mirror, turn sideways and
look at the natural position of your neck. If your head and neck are
pushed forward, then there’s a good chance you have FHP. You’re not
alone either; look around you at your next social outing.
Conditions like this
develop due to several factors. The position of the head while you’re
sleeping, extended use of computers and cellphones, weakened back
muscles, strained and tight neck muscles, and sometimes a lack of
calcium are all causes. If you experience numbness, tingling, or burning
pain between the shoulder blades, it’s past time you paid notice and
make some changes.
Before we stray too
far from the subject of FHP, text neck, as FHP is sometimes called, is
one of the many causes for neck pain. According to the Spine Health
website, text neck is a term used to describe neck pain and damage
sustained from looking down at your cell phone, tablet, or wireless
device too frequently and for too long.
Neck pain has become
increasingly more common throughout the world because of consistent poor
body alignment when using devices. Just about everyone has a cell phone
these days and many users can expect some kind of neck pain because
they aren’t paying attention to their body alignment and their muscles
have adapted to the poor posture position making it easier, and more
dangerous, for them to maintain that position without discomfort.
While posture is
certainly a contributing factor toward neck pain some factors aren’t
related to posture. Some of the most common causes of neck pain include
degenerative disc disease, neck strain, and a neck injury. Injuries
include whiplash, a herniated disc, or a pinched nerved. Neck pain can
also be caused by infections (e.g. a lymph node that leads to swelling
and subsequent neck pain).
experiencing headaches and sharp pain it may already be too late and you
should probably work harder to adapt your habits and body alignment to
reduce the symptoms. If you know you use your phone or a mobile device
often, take breaks and adjust the way you’re using them so your head and
neck are in a safe position. Also, make sure your pillow and rest area
is a safe space for your head and neck. If your head is pushed forward
when it touches your pillow then adjust it or get a new one.
activities of daily living, keep your head up, shoulders back as if
pinching a pencil between your shoulder blades, and chest out so that
you can maintain proper body alignment. If you can’t maintain this
position, make sure to take breaks often to let yourself rest. Lastly,
before you hit the gym make sure your routines include some form of
stretching and strengthening of the upper back.
To increase awareness
across the population, we consistently work with professionals to
educate them on the importance of good posture and body alignment.
That’s in big part the reason for our NPI-Certified Posture Specialist™ program.
If you’re interested in helping others with their posture and want to
join the growing body of professionals that do, check out the program.
To help you get started, we are offering a $50 off discount through this
Use promo code CPS50 to save $50 on our NPI-Certified Posture Specialist™ program. Click Here to Register Now >>