Stretches that ease the pain of tech neck

stretches for tech neck

Americans spend an average of 9 hours per day engaged in screen time, which means we are putting a tremendous amount of stress on our spine. By the time you recognize that you’re in pain, you may have already caused some damage - either in your muscles, ligaments, joints or nerves.

Just like you would stretch your body after every workout, stretching your neck after every extended period of screen time will help prevent injury and pain in the future.

Chin Tuck

Move your chin down toward your chest and hold for 5 seconds. You’ll feel a comfortable stretch from the bottom of your neck up to the base of your skull. Slowly raise your head to look straight ahead. Repeat 8-10 times.

Head Tilt

Tilt your right ear toward your right shoulder and hold for 20 seconds. Slowly bring your head back to the center, and then tilt it to the left and hold for another 20 seconds. Do this 3-5 times on each side.

Neck Rotation

Turn your head to the right so your chin is hovering over your right shoulder and hold for 20 seconds. Bring your head slowly back to the center, and then turn it to the left and hold for another 20 seconds. Repeat 3-5 times on each side.

If you’re reading this, your neck probably hurts

tech neck remedies

We do love our devices, don’t we? Cell phones, tablets and laptops are not just convenient tools of the trade, they have become completely indispensable to daily life. But our need for 24/7 access and availability comes with a cost to our bodies.

The simple act of looking down at your screen on a regular basis can lead to degenerative changes to your neck, muscle strain, headaches and even spinal injury. We tend to hunch our shoulders forward and hold our necks at a very unnatural angle for long periods of time while we use our devices.

It’s called “tech neck” and the pain is real. Tilting your head forward by just 15 degrees actually puts an extra 27 pounds of stress on the cervical spine – aka your neck.
damage from tech neck

But there are some easy ways to prevent tech neck by improving your posture while texting, reading, working, gaming and watching videos.

Take a little break

Try taking a 3-minute break every 20 minutes while you are using your device. Look up, change your position and move around for a bit. Your device is smart – use an app or alarm to set break reminders.

Take a load off

Sit in an ergonomic chair with a headrest and keep the back of your head flush against it while using your device. You’ll get better support for your lower back, too.

Take it to higher ground

Use a holder to elevate your device closer to eye-level, which can significantly reduce how much you need to flex your neck and head forward.

Take heed with pain

If you feel pain in your neck or between your shoulders, if you have numbness or tingling in your arms, or if you experience frequent headaches - there may be something more serious going on that you can discuss with your chiropractor.

Take time to disconnect

This high-tech world can really take its toll on us. Designate time every day to put the phone down, turn off the computer and go outside. Ditch the virtual world for a while and talk to some real people!