With desk jobs coupled with a sedentary lifestyle which entails working on computers, neck and back pain have become a common place which has plagued a lot of people. Furthermore, such neck and back pains are often ignored or put off till they become severe and uncontrollable.
Spinal health and its care is extremely important for our overall well-being and should not be neglected at any cost. This can also be attributed owing to bad sleep, bad posture, a sudden twist, or too much stress. Back and neck pain may also be as a result of various causes related to muscle or bone problems. Preventing neck and back pain is possible by simply becoming more aware of your posture. Listed below are few ways, neck and back pain can be prevented or at least controlled.
Work related precautions
In the today’s day and age, everything revolves around computers and it is quite difficult to abstain from this machine, be it at work or home. When working on a computer, make sure to position your computer screen at your eye level while also being certain that it’s at an arm’s length in order to avoid neck pain. Your job may require you to sit put in a single place and position for hours at a stretch. While you’re at it get hold of a comfortable supportive chair which will take pressure away from the lower back. This will also give your back the support and angle it requires.
Every 30 – 40 minutes, it’s imperative that you take a break as well. Hence, from time to time, make it a point to get up, stretch your muscle at regular intervals of time or go for a short walk to get fresh air.
A correct sleeping posture is of the utmost priority as it goes a long way in not only preventing unwanted sprains in your neck and back but also in healing all body pains after a hard day’s work during the time you rest your body and put it to sleep. You need to make sure that during this time you’re properly rested as incorrect sleeping positions will definitely increase the chances of your neck and back pains aggravating.
Also while you’re at it, make sure to use the right pillow to support your neck as it goes a long way in preventing neck pains. Choose a pillow which comforts you by aligning your spine in the desired way. As a thumb of rule, stomach sleepers should go for a soft pillow while side sleepers for medium, and back sleepers for a firm pillow. Having said that, try making it a habit of sleeping on your back as it’s widely regarded as the best position to let your entire spine rest comfortably
Cell phone related precautions
Texting and using smart phones, in general, have taken a toll on our spinal health. Looking down at your cell phone tends to puts excessive strain on your neck so it makes sense that you try to use your phone at your eye level whenever possible. Additionally, try to minimise texting time while making sure to rest your hands and device on a pillow, and taking frequent breaks.
Stooping down your neck for long periods strains the joints, ligaments, discs as well as muscles in your neck region and can lead to premature degenerative changes in your neck. This could even spread to your back to add further agony.
Be it going to school or work, everyone seems to be carrying heavy bags on a daily basis. Laptop bags, hang bags, shopping bags, etc. should be carried by distributing their load evenly around our body. Try to avoid using one-shoulder side sling bags which tend to put pressure on only one side of your body and instead carry shoulder bags which support both your shoulders. Uneven load distribution on a regular basis may deteriorate your spinal health causing neck and back pain.
Additionally, if possible, try to lighten your load by getting rid of items which are deemed unnecessary in your regular schedule and instead make it a practice of taking only your essentials in your purse or briefcase.
It is not only essential to pay attention to cardio but it is equally important to do relevant exercises that are meant to strengthen your neck and back. Regular sets of back and neck strengthening and stretching exercises should be incorporated as part of your fitness regime. While you’re at it, also try to perform shoulder shrugs and rolls to reduce tension in the shoulder blade and neck muscles. Additionally, there are several yoga postures which can also assist in keeping your neck and back healthy and strong.
Stay well hydrated
Drinking plenty of water and keeping yourself hydrated is extremely vital to keep the inter-vertebral discs in your spinal column, strong and flexible at all times. Water is important for the functioning of our entire body and this also includes our neck and back. Ideally, try to drink at least eight large glasses of water a day. If you’re at work, make sure to keep a water bottle handy at all times so that you can sip throughout the day.