Ways to reduce tension in the neck and back.
With so many of us staring into computers or gazing down at our smart phones most of the day, it’s no wonder most of us have had an aching back or sore neck ruin a nice day — some of us more often than others.
A stiff neck typically is the result of muscles weakening over time from poor posture or misuse, but what if there was a way to completely avoid or minimize your next bout of this misery?
Try these simple remedies to relieve yourself of the pain whenever it sprouts.
1. Take over-the-counter pain relievers such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen. But certain types shouldn’t be taken too often or for too long. Follow your doctor’s prescription for medicine use.
2. Strike a spine-friendly pose — at work, while driving, when texting, etc. Poor posture may contribute to back and neck strain. It may help to:
Adjust your workstation. For instance, keep your computer screen at arm’s length. Feet should touch the floor or be supported.
Switch positions as often as possible. For example, if you sit for work, get up to stretch or walk around.
When driving distances, stop frequently for breaks to walk and stretch.
Browsing on your smartphone? Try to keep it at either chest or eye level.
3. Lighten up. Excess weight equals excess strain on your spine.
4. Have a partner gently massage the sore or painful areas.
5. Sleep on a firm mattress without a pillow or with a designated neck pillow.
It’s a simple truth: If your spine isn’t happy, you may not be happy for long. Don’t stand for it. Actually, do take a stand — for your back and better health.
When you’re already aching.
These tips may ease pain — and help the healing process. If the pain persists and continues to get in the way of your daily activities, consult your GP.