What Is Tech Neck & Can Physiotherapy Help?

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If you spend many hours using a device such as a smartphone, a tablet, or even an e-reader, you could find that you start suffering from pain and tension in your upper body. The unofficial name for this condition is tech neck, and it’s a type of repetitive strain injury.

Symptoms of Tech Neck

Tech neck manifests itself in a variety of ways. You may experience any of the following symptoms.

Pain in the Upper Body

Pain can be a stabbing sensation in one place or an aching throughout your neck, upper back, or shoulders. The pain likely increases when you flex your neck forward to look at the screen of your device. In addition, if muscles at the base of your neck start to spasm, you may also suffer from headaches.

Forward Head Posture

Holding your head forward for extended periods may lead to an imbalance in the muscles. You’ll find it difficult to keep your ears above your shoulders and your shoulders may start to round.

Limited Mobility

Tightness in the upper body may make it difficult to move your head or shoulders.

Can Physiotherapy Help?

Physiotherapy is the ideal solution for treating tech neck, since it covers the two things you need to eliminate the issue: to strengthen and gain flexibility in your neck and to improve your posture when using mobile devices. Your physiotherapist will guide you through exercises at your appointment and teach you stretches to do at home. You’ll also learn better habits for using your device.

For instance, you’ll do exercises to reverse the elongation of the muscles at the front of your neck (the deep cervical flexor muscles) and the upper back muscles. You’ll also reverse the shortening of the muscles that run from the back of your neck to your head and your chest muscles. For better posture, your physiotherapist will show you how to tuck your chin and pull your shoulders back to keep your body in a neutral position.

It’s important to work with a physiotherapist to learn how to stretch and strengthen your neck safely. You may need a few training sessions before you are able to continue with a home exercise program alone. Your physiotherapist will design a personalized program for you, according to your symptoms, posture, and tech habits.

You can receive physiotherapy for neck pain in Sherwood Park and Edmonton from Global Physiotherapy. We’ll help you eliminate discomfort and regain full mobility. Contact us to book an appointment.