Working From Home – Part 1: Neck & Associated Headaches

If you have in the past or are currently suffering from neck pain and headache, you know where the saying “pain in the neck” comes from. However, as annoying as this can be, it can also be the issue relating to headaches which you just cannot shake off.

Did you know that 45% of Brits report discomfort in their neck due to sitting for long periods at work?

This is one of the primary causes many people seek Chiropractic care to help resolve these symptoms.

If you come to see us for neck issues we also give home/work advice to help your neck and posture. Here is a sneak peak that may be helpful if you are currently working from home.

Below are some helpful tips to help with neck issues:

Where Are You Working?

Many of us left work thinking we would be back in the office within a few weeks. At most, we grabbed the office plant (if not then RIP office plant), our desk lucky charm and the last biscuit – well it would be a shame to waste it!

If you were not one of the fortunate few who already had a home office, chances are you set up a makeshift office.  This could have been on your bed, on the sofa, or even on the toilet seat (yes, a patient was actually working from his bathroom.) Regardless of set-up your ergonomic work position is probably not in your favour and therefore a high chance you are feeling the consequences of this through neck pain and headache.

If the above is still your favoured set-up, it is time to rethink.

Work station setting up for working from home.

Below are some helpful tips for a better work station:

Chairs

  • Adjust your chair so that your feet are flat on the ground.
  • If you do not have an adjustable chair, that is ok. Use a footstool or something similar to help adjust your position.
Screen height for working from home.

Computer Screens

  • Your screen should be at eye level.
  • You may need to raise it to achieve this.
  • Monitor stands are a good option for this.
  • A stack of books can be a good option as well.
  • Your monitor should also be about an arm’s length away from you.

This positioning will reduce the strain on your neck during your workday.

Keyboards

  • Should be straight ahead of you and positioned so that your forearms and wrists are parallel to the ground.
  • Keep your mouse close so your elbow stays close to your body while you are using it.
Best keyboard position for home office.

Screen Time

  • Spending too much time looking at a screen can exacerbate not only neck pain, but also trigger headaches and eye strain.
  • There is a high chance you find yourself hunched over staring at the screen and together with harsh lighting could trigger headaches.
  • While working from home, it can be hard to limit our screen time.  Even if we are not doing work, we are all tempted to have a peek at FB or Instagram to see what is going on, or get carried away with a bit of internet shopping.  Yes, I know we all deserve those new shoes!
  • Current lockdown makes it tough to limit our screen time. But for the sake of not only our posture, but wellbeing it is essential to try and do what you can.
  • Even doing something as little as shaking your arms out or walking around your desk can help to break postural habits: Something is better than nothing.
  • If you spend a lot of time making phone calls, if you don’t already, then think of getting a headset. While on these phone calls, have a stand up from your desk and a walk around if you can.
Get fresh air to relieve neck pain and headache

Fresh Air

We live in Scotland, so chances are the heating is on. Being in the house all day, stuck at our desks with the heating on and no fresh air will cause us to build up tension.  Holding this tension can increase our muscle aches and reduce our movement.  

Getting out and about daily helps to reduce this tension and gets us moving those joints.  A daily walk not only helps us physically but is also great for a brain reset too.  A win win for both our physical and mental health.  

It is amazing what getting out and going for just a short walk and taking in some fresh air can do to reset our mood. It helps relieve the tension in our muscles that have been stuck in the same position at our desks. 

Not forgetting it helps to give us our essential Vitamin D boost – even in Scotland.

We Can Help

If you are one of those 45% who are finding yourself suffering from neck pain and headache related symptoms and looking for relief, Mern Chiropractic is here to help. 

Under Covid-19 guidelines Chiropractic is classed as Essential Health Care, therefore we are currently allowed to remain open to serve our local community. 

The clinic operates under Covid PPE guidelines and Chiropractor Laura Nuttall DC is ready to help resolve any issues you may be currently experiencing. This may be neck discomfort or backaches linked with working from home.

 You can book your consultations today by either calling us on 07469205041 or email [email protected] 

Look out for Part 2 and 3 of the Working from Home blog series.

Dr Laura Nuttall DC

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top
%d bloggers like this: