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How To Avoid And Treat Tech-Neck Symptoms

Treat Tech-Neck Symptoms with Physiotherapy

In this digital age, there is an influx of smartphones, tablet computers and notebook computers and the interconnectivity accorded by these gadgets, in which many people spend extended hours staring at these screens. Aside from it not being easy on the eyes, consistent use of these mobile and electronic devices in a poor posture can lead to tech-neck.

Tech-neck is primarily a type of neck pain and stiffness that may lead to back and spine problems. If the pain is increasing in frequency, it is important to visit a physiotherapy clinic or neck pain specialists in Singaporeto seek for treatment.

Symptoms

Similar to generalized neck pain, you can feel soreness and slight stiffness around the neck, which can also spread to the shoulders and mid-back section. Other symptoms include chronic headaches and muscle aches, strained neck muscles, numbness and tingling sensation in the neck and joints from the shoulders to the arms. It can also cause limited mobility and loss of strength in your fingers and hands.

Managing Tech Neck

When you look down and drop your head forward, it changes your neck’s natural curvature. Over time, this misalignment can strain muscles and lead to wear and tear on the neck’s structures. Besides trying to minimize time spent on the computer or using your smart phone sparingly, there are several ways you can do to prevent or minimize the symptoms of tech neck.

1. Maintain a Good Posture

Good posture is key to managing your neck pain as well as help you maintain proper alignment of your spine. If you are working desk-bound, adjust the position of your computer monitor so that you are at eye-level at the top of the monitor, chin and shoulders down, and elbows close to the body.

When using your tech devices, rather than bending your head forward at chest or waist level, hold it at your eye level. Avoiding bending your neck and rounding your shoulder forward which causes poor posture and muscle strain.

2. Download Posture Apps

Use your mobile device in a smart way and download posture apps. Some apps track your posture based on the tilt angle of the device and alert you when you have stayed in a wrong posture for too long. Others can send you reminders to move around and take a break, or prompts you to perform a couple of stretches to mitigate the occurrence of tech-neck.

3. Stretch and Take Intermittent Walks

Take routine breaks and get up to stand or take a quick walk. It will get your blood circulating and alleviate some of your discomfort. Stretching is also a quick and efficient activity which can be incorporated throughout the day. Stand tall and reach both hands behind your back. Use your left hand to grab your right wrist and pull gently while tilting your head to the left. Hold the position for 30 seconds, switch hands and repeat.

Seek Professional Help

If you are still experiencing incessant soreness on your neck that spreads to your back and shoulders, the best course of action is to seek for physiotherapy treatment. Get your condition assessed by a neck pain specialist in Singapore, where you will also be recommended the proper treatment and management regime to help in your recovery.

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After childbirth with an epidural, one may experience short-term back soreness at the catheter site where the medication was injected. As such, most women tend to associate labour epidural analgesia with chronic or long-term back pain. But is there really a connection between labour epidural and chronic backache?

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How To Minimize Work-Related Back Pain

Persistent back pain could be a result prolonged hours sitting in front of the computer at your desk-bound job. Sometimes it can cause additional discomfort when the pain manifests and travel up to the neck. If left unattended, back pain could take a toll on your standard of living and cause mental and physical implications.

Consider the following tips to help you minimize work-related back pain.

1. Lumbar Support Chair

As most office workers are seated for over 8 hours, a suitable chair is essential in preventing the occurrence of back pain. Pair your office chair with a back cushion or pillow that provides good lumbar support and allow for adjustments that would promote proper posture. People tend to slouch forward when sitting in unsupported chairs and this can cause rounding of the lower back. The spine’s natural curvature is disrupted, leading to chronic low back pain.

2. Correct Height

A lot of desk workers either sit too far away from or too close to their desks. Ideally, you’d want your torso to be an arm’s length away from the monitor. Also, the top of your monitor should be around 2 to 3 inches above eye level, located straight in front of you. Your chair should also be at the correct height for you and your desk, with your forearms close to parallel to the floor while working with the keyboard and mouse.

3. Keep your Feet Lying Flat on the Floor

Make an effort to keep your foot planted on the floor and thighs parallel to the floor when you’re working in front of the desk. If you are unable to keep your feet planted flat on the ground, you can use a stool or place some books to use as a foot rest.

Keeping your feet planted and at least shoulder-width apart helps minimize any tension in your knees and ankles.

4. Take Breaks

Like any other muscle in your body, your back needs a break from time to time. Take regular breaks and get up every hour or so to walk around the office. You can also do something simple like shoulder rolls or getting up and walking around for a few minutes which can help reduce the pressure on the spinal discs and boost proper blood circulation in the body. Overall, when you move about and stretch on a regular basis throughout the day, it will help keep the muscles, joints, ligaments and tendons loose for so you’ll feel more relaxed and focused. Don’t forget to give your wrists and hands a break too, and maintain a neutral, comfortable position while using your mouse and typing.

5. Do Stretching Exercises

Something as simple as rolling your shoulders can help relieve the pressure on your back and also promote circulation.

6. Don’t Squint

If you’re squinting, that would mean that you are in an uncomfortable position and will end up straining your eyes, neck, and back, too much. Whether it’s because your screen is too small or improper ergonomics, you should check your posture and adjust it accordingly. Remember, your body should always be in an upright position.

Back pain can rule your life, both when at work and when you’re at home.  Adopt these simple steps to minimize any minor work-related back pain but if you are facing constant and persistent back pain, you don’t have to face it alone or manage it on your own. Seek a professional’s help and go for a physiotherapy  to find out what’s causing your back pain and what you can do about it. It will be beneficial for you to get the expertise from a physiotherapist and be guided on the appropriate treatment methods in improving back pain.

Symptoms and Causes of a Frozen Shoulder

A frozen shoulder is a very common condition. It’s characterized by a reduced mobility on the shoulders as a result of the stiffening of the muscles.

Sometimes, a frozen shoulder can be mistaken for arthritis. However, it is important to take note that both conditions are different. Where frozen shoulder refers specifically to a problem pertaining to the joint area, arthritis on the other hand refers to a problem affecting other joints, or even multiple joint areas.

Frozen shoulder affects all ages, but is most common between people aged 40 and 60 years old. Women are also more likely to have a frozen shoulder compared to men. Although generally referred to as a common condition, a frozen shoulder, which can affect both shoulders at the same time but often only one, only affects a small percentage of the world’s population (3%).

Symptoms-and-Causes-of-a-Frozen-Shoulder

Symptoms

Frozen shoulder will manifest itself as a persistent pain on the shoulder joint, usually accompanied by stiffness.

While sometimes incredibly painful, the pain is often only inconvenient and annoying. Symptoms may develop gradually, which comes and goes over a long period of time.

Risk Factors

While the reason behind why people get a frozen shoulder occur has not been fully explained yet, researchers have found risk factors over many years of study.

This includes:

  • Being over 40 years old
  • Being female (7 out of 10 with frozen shoulder are female)
  • Recent surgery or an arm fracture. Either of these two can cause the shoulders to be immobile and to stiffen up during the recovery process
  • 1 out of 10 diabetes patients are likely to develop frozen shoulder, and they usually suffer from more severe symptoms. The reason for this remains unclear as of yet.

Conditions such as stroke, hyperthyroidism, hypothyroidism, cardiovascular disease, and Parkinson’s disease have all also been proven to increase one’s risk for getting a frozen shoulder.

Treatment

The aim of a typical frozen shoulder treatment is to help minimize the pain while preserving the mobility of the shoulder.

Recovering from a frozen shoulder can take months if not years, and symptoms can persist for an extremely long time.

Below are the most common methods used in a shoulder pain treatment in Singapore:

  • Physiotherapy can help you in the recovery from a frozen shoulder. Our physiotherapist can perform treatment techniques to increase movement in the shoulder joint, as well as reducing pain. They can also show you exercises that are specific to your condition and ensure you are performing them correctly.
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen can help alleviate pain and reduce the inflammation on the joints. Meanwhile, acetaminophen is often recommended for prolonged use.
  • In worse cases, a prescription painkiller, like an opiate-based painkiller, might be necessary to help the patient deal with the pain.
  • Alternating and using hot and cold compression packs have been proven to help alleviate the pain by reducing both the pain and swelling.
  • Injecting corticosteroid directly into the shoulder joints can help alleviate pain in worse cases, but this treatment method is often discouraged because it can cause more harm than good because of its many adverse side-effects.
  • Using transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) machines to numb the nerve endings in the spinal cord responsible for controlling pain has also been proven to help many frozen shoulder patients deal with the pain.
  • Regular exercise that’s designed specifically to help the sufferer maintain mobility and flexibility in the shoulders without overexerting effort can also help with the pain as well.
  • Sometimes, surgery might be necessary.
    Your physician will be able to properly diagnose frozen shoulder as it shares many of its symptoms to other shoulder-related problems, such as shoulder impingement in Singapore.

If you’re experiencing any pain on your shoulders that doesn’t seem to improve, make sure that you have it checked by a physiotherapist who can provide proper advice and guidance to relieve and treat your pain.

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