71% of people now working from home due to the COVID-19 pandemic have noticed an increase in neck pain associated with the work-from-home environment. But treating this neck pain doesn't need to be complicated, expensive, or time-consuming. Learn more about why you may be having more neck pain these days and what you can do about it.
Why More Neck Pain?
Workers who left their offices for the last time in March or April 2020 may be dealing with a less-than-optimal workspace more than six months later. Working at one's dining table or peering at a small laptop screen might work for a week or two, but over the long term, the lack of lumbar support or ergonomically designed products can cause neck strain, muscle spasms, and other orthopedic issues.
Narrowing down what's causing this neck and back pain can be tough. In some cases, it may be from sitting on a couch or bed and rounding your back while you work instead of sitting at a desk chair. In other situations, you might be accustomed to using a dual screen monitor and are instead working from a single smaller screen. Either way, it's easy to become distracted by your work and ignore the fact that your foot has fallen asleep or that you've been sitting for four to five hours straight.
How Can You Solve Your Work-From-Home Neck Pain?
There are a few things anyone can do to improve their ergonomic situation and help keep their muscles from becoming tight or constricted.
- Make sure to get up and move around at least once an hour. Taking a walk at lunch or even just heading out to check the mail can go a long way toward keeping your muscles loose and your heart rate up.
- Do some neck stretches (or full-body yoga stretches) when you can.
- Avoid sitting in the same position for more than 30 minutes or so.
- Invest in an ergonomic desk chair if you don't already have one. You may be able to ask your employer to reimburse the cost of a new chair or even go retrieve your own chair from the office.
- It's also a good idea to invest in a new monitor instead of working from a laptop screen.
- Apply heat and ice to any sore spots at the end of the day or invest in a handheld massager.
By keeping these tips in mind, you should begin to notice a decrease in the amount of pain you're feeling at the end of each workday.
To learn more options for neck pain treatments, contact a doctor.