Neck pain syndrome (or cervical pain syndrome) is a chronic pain condition that affects about 10% of people, although about half of people will experience neck pain at some time in life. The financial burden of chronic neck pain affects both the health care industry as well as the workplace.
According to a study, after more than 6,000 evaluations, 516 patients were treated for cervical pain syndrome. Interestingly, more than 80% of the patients who exhibited symptoms were women. 120 patients were part of a further study, all women and all professionals who sit throughout the business day. In fact, approximately 90% of the respondents would use a computer during the business day. 1 in 5 were smokers (another well-documented factor in chronic neck pain).
Avoiding Neck Pain Through Proper Posture
One of the biggest factors in avoiding neck pain for an office worker who sits in front of a computer all day is paying attention to posture. Here are 5 factors to keep in mind:
- Any monitors should be at eye level. Leaning the head forward at even just a 15-degree angle more than doubles the pressure on the spine from the weight of the head.
- Use a headset if you have to take calls. One big mistake office workers make is holding a phone with the shoulder.
- Keep the keyboard low enough that the arms stay parallel to the ground.
- Use the right chair. With your back against the backrest (hopefully with some lumbar support) your knees should be able to bend at a 90-degree angle.
- Keep feet flat on the ground or get a footrest if you need the chair higher for proper monitor and keyboard height.
Upper Cervical Chiropractic for Neck Pain
Changing posture can help prevent further injury, but if pain already exists, it may indicate an upper cervical misalignment. Not only can a misalignment result in tissue damage or pinched nerves, but it can also make proper posture feel less natural. Seeking the assistance of an upper cervical chiropractor can give the body time to heal and make it easier to maintain proper posture, thereby avoiding further injury.