As noted in this Washington Post piece, complaints of persistent back and neck pain have become one of the most common reasons for doctor visits in the US. This is because of a phenomenon that has come to be referred to as tech neck, a sometimes intense pain and stiffness in the neck or back caused by holding the head in an awkward position when staring at a screen for extended periods of time. Anyone who stays active on social media throughout their day or works in an office job is likely familiar with the pain, discomfort and negatively impacted mobility that are typical of tech neck. While the disorder is widespread, it can be treated in a few different ways.
First off, the cause of this particular ailment must be addressed. Tech neck sufferers are advised to break up the time they spend staring down at a smartphone or at a computer screen and to stretch their necks and backs frequently. Heat and ice pads can be used to bring down inflammation and reduce pain. And while some recommend taking over-the-counter pain relievers, it’s not ideal treatment for a chronic problem because of the side effects associated with NSAID medications. On the other hand, massage is an ideal treatment because it both relieves pain and helps strained muscles heal by putting them in a relaxed state.