Monday, March 29th, 2021
Remote work makes life incredibly convenient. Workers don’t have to worry about their commute. Employers don’t have to pay as much overhead for utilities. But there are some downsides to working from home.
You may not realize it, but working remotely can take a physical toll on your body. Some of the issues are familiar to anyone who works in an office. But there are also some unique physical risks associated with working from home.
Neck and Back Pain
Anyone who stares at a screen for most of the day is at risk of neck and back pain. Some experts call this tech neck, but that isn’t an official name. To put this in perspective, one survey found that 45% of remote workers started experiencing joint and back pain since switching to working from home. When asked if there is new pain or worsening pain since working from home, the percentage increased to 71%.
The problem comes from how we sit when on screens. Whether it is a computer, tablet, or smartphone, we tend to lean forward. This is incredibly bad for your health. Remember that, on average, adult heads weigh about 11 pounds. When you lean forward, you put all that weight on your neck. Even worse, it is in an unnatural position.
Neck and back pain aren’t the only issues associated with this. You may also feel muscle spasms, headaches, or neck stiffness. If it gets bad enough, the discs in your back or neck may bulge. In the worst-case scenario, they may even rupture.
How to Reduce the Effects
The good news is you can take steps to reduce this type of pain and stiffness.
Start by choosing a desk chair with good lumbar support. Confirm that the chair supports your body weight, so it isn’t left on your spine.
Always try to avoid leaning forward. Here’s an easy way to think of the position you want to be in. If you fall asleep, your head will lean back, not forward.
Take a few quick breaks (even just a few seconds) to move your shoulders and neck regularly.
Consider getting a footrest as well. Preventing your feet from dangling reduces leg pain. This also adds support to your entire body. The result should be less back strain.
Wrist Pain and Carpal Tunnel, Especially From Laptops
Wrist pain and potential carpal tunnel or numbness are known issues for people who type a lot. But the fact that many remote workers use laptops makes this even worse.
The issue comes from the small keyboard combined with the low screen. The combination means you are more likely to hunch forward. Additionally, your wrists will not get the support they need.
The other issue with laptops is that they encourage you to work in unusual locations. Sitting in an unsupportive desk chair is bad enough. But working from a bed or couch can even be worse. That is particularly concerning given than in a British survey, 24% of respondents said they are working from their sofas and 17% are working on the floor. This applies to both your posture (your neck and back) and your wrists.
How to Reduce the Effects
You can reduce these effects with a few simple actions. Start by making it a point to sit at a table or desk. Make sure you have a supportive chair as well.
If you can, use a separate mouse and keyboard. These steps help keep your wrists in the ideal neutral position. Set up the screen so it sits level with your eyes. You may need an extra monitor or a laptop stand.
Eye Strain and Blue Light
Eye strain is another issue that is common among office workers but even worse for remote workers. With remote work, you spend more time staring at a screen.
Consider, for example, talking to a coworker. In the office, you could get up, walk to their desk, and speak to them in person. There would be no screens involved. With remote work, this becomes a Slack conversation or video call. Your eyes never leave the computer screen.
Blue light also contributes to eye strain. Your eyes have to work harder when focusing on screens with blue light. Unfortunately, most digital devices emit blue light.
How to Reduce the Effects
There are a few things you can do to reduce eye strain. Start by seeing what you can do to reduce the amount of time you spend staring at a screen. At the very least, look away from the screen for half a minute or so every once in a while.
You can also adjust your computer, so the screen is about 15 or 20 degrees less than horizontal eye level.
To deal with blue light, consider blue-light-filtering glasses. You should also use the 20-20-20 rule. Take a 20-second (or more) break every 20 minutes. During this time, focus your eyes on something 20 feet away.
If you make those changes and still deal with eye strain, consider getting your eyes checked. You may want computer glasses. These can reduce strain even if they have a minimal correction.
Health Risks of Being Sedentary
There are also plenty of health risks associated with being sedentary. Experts have expressed concern about these for years. But those concerns only accounted for an office setting. The risks can increase even more when working remotely.
After all, there is no need to get up for the commute. Even if you drive to work, you will walk to your car to do so. Then, at work in an office, you at least get up a few times. Maybe you’ll collect documents from the printer or get coffee.
All these small movements are less likely at home. To make matters worse, many remote workers find themselves working longer.
That’s problematic because being sedentary can increase your risk of heart disease and diabetes.
How to Reduce the Effects
The best way to overcome this is to get moving. Make it a point to get up and walk around your house regularly. At the very least, take a real lunch break. If you can fit in a quick walk, that’s better. If not, at least you will get up from your desk.
At least once an hour, get up for a few minutes. Do some stretches or walk around your house.
Mental Health Is Also a Concern
Although not a physical issue, remote work can also be bad for your mental health. This tends to come from working longer hours and having fewer home-work boundaries. That combines with reduced socialization.
Friday, June 21st, 2019
Straining yourself because of neck pain can not only be discouraging but it can also become a hindrance to everyday activities. No matter the initial cause of injury, neck discomfort needs to be resolved with utmost haste in order to help prevent other complications from occurring. It's at this moment that you should get into contact with our chiropractor in Valley Stream.
In most cases, neck pain can range from either temporary to chronic, depending upon the severity. In order to properly treat this condition, you may need to receive both physical therapy as well as chiropractic care for long-lasting results. These two forms of treatment go hand-in-hand when treating chronic pain of the spine and neck. Our office not only offers a chiropractor in Valley Stream but also physical therapy for our patient's convenience. If you have neck pain, your first step is to determine the cause, and the next step is to visit Comprehensive Healthcare Group to receive treatment and the proper care.
Unfortunately, neck pain can be caused by an abundance of factors. On some occasions, radiating pain can be stimulated due to an injury, other times the cause may not be quite as clear. Visiting a chiropractor in Valley Stream and receiving tests can help you figure out the cause of your pain. Some of the most common potential causes for your neck pain may include the following:
- Overuse Injuries - this type of neck pain is typically temporary and results from straining your neck muscles over a long period of time.
- Arthritis - all of your joints are at risk for being worn down from arthritis, and the neck is no exception. The deterioration of the soft tissues surrounding your joint bones can cause pain and discomfort in the long term, especially when using the joint often as a result of repetitive motions.
- Pinched Nerve (Cervical Radiculopathy) - this condition can affect the sensitive nerve endings in the spine, leading to pain radiating throughout the neck area. The compression of the nerves along your spine can be the result of a herniated or degenerated disc in the spinal column.
- Headaches/Migraines - these conditions can cause pain and stiffness in the neck as a result of the pain and heaviness felt in the head.
If you’re unsure of the cause of your neck pain, visiting your physician and determining why you’re experiencing pain is the first step towards healing. Once you’ve determined the cause, you can begin your treatment by receiving specialized care.
How a Physical Therapist and Chiropractor in Valley Stream Can Benefit You:
A physical therapist may offer both passive and active physical therapy to help treat your neck pain. Passive physical therapy includes treatments like massage therapy, the application of ice or heat, or electrotherapy. Active physical therapy treatments will involve you doing specified movements which stretch and work the muscles in the neck.
Pairing physical therapy with chiropractic care can offer huge benefits, as one complements the other. While receiving physical therapy, getting regular chiropractic adjustments of the neck can realign the joints, improve mobility and flexibility, reduce inflammation and pain. Some benefits of utilizing a physical therapist and chiropractor in Valley Stream include:
- Potential for pain reductions.
- Boosted mobility.
- Improved flexibility.
- Strengthened muscles, helping to increase injury prevention.
- Increased range of motion, making movements more comfortable.
- Improvement in joint function.
If you’re looking to complement your physical therapy with chiropractic care, Comprehensive Healthcare Group can offer you the treatment and relief you need. Contact our Chiropractor in Valley Stream to schedule an appointment to stop your neck pain today.
Wednesday, May 1st, 2019
Over the past decade, technology has become an essential component of our day to day lives. Typically, it has been said that Americans spend an average of 8.5 hours in front of a screen each day. We utilize technology for everything we do and unfortunately, our bodies are suffering from this.
What is tech neck?
People do not realize how serious the pain in our neck can be due to screen time. Tech neck is known as the tilt in our neck from looking down at our phones, which can cause great damage to our spinal cords. Tilting your head puts pressure on your spinal cord, which will soon after leading to back pain. If you spend most of your day on a computer or looking down at a phone screen, you may be developing tech neck already.
How can I avoid this?
Although it is very hard to not use our electronics, there are some ways to prevent this from occurring. Here are some tips on how to prevent this from occurring:
- While texting, bring your phone up to in front of you so you are not tilting your head down.
- Look with your eyes instead of with your head.
- For all you tech enthusiasts, it also may be time to lower the amount of time you use your electronics.
- For example, make a no phones at the table rule or turn off your notifications.
- Take breaks: if you are sitting at a desk, make sure you take a break from the screen every hour or so and take a walk.
- Exercise: make sure you are doing exercises to help strengthen the muscles around your neck.
How we can help:
Visiting a chiropractor or physical therapist at Comprehensive Healthcare Group is a great way to ensure you get the help you need to treat your tech neck. At CHG, we are dedicated to minimizing your neck and back pain caused by technology. Our chiropractic services provide hands-on manipulation for the problem area and work to reduce the pain. If you are experiencing constant neck pain, make sure to visit a chiropractor at Comprehensive Healthcare Group to help!
Wednesday, July 18th, 2018
It is easy to feel hopeless when you seem to have tried every remedy for treating your chronic pain and are not seeing any results. You are tired of putting different medications in your body and want a safe, natural way to relieve your pain. As a component of traditional Chinese medicine, acupuncture has the aim of balancing the patient’s energy flow throughout their body in order to help boost wellbeing and cure illnesses. At Comprehensive Healthcare Group, we offer Acupuncture in Oceanside and Valley Stream that can help you safely reduce pain and discomfort.
What Is Acupuncture?
Acupuncture is a medical practice that involves inserting very thin needles through a person's skin to stimulate specific points on the body in order to alleviate pain. An acupuncturist will normally insert 10-20 needles into the body at a time. Because these needles are so small and thin, patients will not experience any pain during the process. Traditional Chinese medicine believes that health is a result of balance and harmony within the body. Therefore, illness is believed to be a result of imbalance. Inserting the right combination of needles into the body’s energy flow points is said to bring proper energy flow back to the body or in other words, relieve discomfort.
What Conditions Does It Treat?
Our acupuncture in Oceanside is used to relieve discomfort that results from conditions such as:
- Lower back pain
- Neck pain
- Knee pain
- Headaches and migraines
- Dental pain
- Labor pain
- Menstrual cramps
- Carpal tunnel
Recently, it has grown to be popular for treating certain health conditions and overall wellness such as stress management, anxiety, and depression.
What Are The Benefits Of Acupuncture?
Acupuncture has been proven to have an array of benefits among patients such as:
- Very few, if any, side effects
- Can be combined with other treatments
- Can control some types of pain
- Can safely help patients who cannot take medication
At Comprehensive Healthcare Group, our practice is proud to offer a variety of types of acupuncture in Oceanside. If you are interested in using acupuncture to help relieve pain, make an appointment here.
Thursday, June 21st, 2018
Fibromyalgia is considered a chronic disorder defined by broad musculoskeletal pain paired with fatigue, sleep, basic memory, and mood complications. Fibromyalgia heightens pain sensations by changing the way the brain processes pain signals. Comprehensive Healthcare Group, a physiatrist in Oceanside and Valley Stream uses personalized management techniques to reduce these sensations.
Research states that consistent stimulation of the nerves causes the brain of those suffering from fibromyalgia to interact differently. This change elevates specific neurotransmitters in the brain that signal pain. These neurotransmitters develop a memory to pain, becoming more hypersensitive and can cause overreactions to pain signals.
Fibromyalgia is more commonly seen in women and those who have a genetic history of fibromyalgia inside one’s family. Comprehensive Healthcare Group has a physiatrist in Oceanside that offers some of the best treatment for fibromyalgia.
Fibromyalgia causes one to have aches all over, including some “trigger points” in your body that can continue to ache no matter what at-home remedies you may try. Common symptoms of fibromyalgia include:
- General Pain- Dull aches and pains that have been consistent for at least three months. These pains normally occur all over your body, both above and below your waist area.
- Fatigue- Even if you are sleeping for a long period of time, people with fibromyalgia still often wake up groggy and do not feel refreshed. In some cases, those with fibromyalgia may develop specific sleep disorders, including but not limited to restless leg syndrome and sleep apnea. Restless leg syndrome includes a sensation in one’s legs that gives you a constant urge to move to relieve the sensation, while sleep apnea obstructs ones breathing during sleep.
- “Fibro Fog”- The symptom of “fibro fog” impacts the ability to maintain focus to complete basic mental tasks. This fog impacts your ability to choose words and hold conversations.
While there is no determined cure for fibromyalgia, there are management techniques known by our physiatrist in Oceanside to help control pain brought by fibromyalgia. Some of the most successful management techniques come from exercise and relaxation, reducing personal stress is also known to weaken the fibromyalgia pain.
There is not one specific approach known for pain management, but each patient who is seen by a physiatrist in Oceanside has their own disciplined focus arranged to set them up to function at the highest possible level. Rehabilitation is tailored to each symptom of pain to reduce stress caused by chronic pain.
In addition, some exercise will improve your function and diminish pain. Overworking may flare up pain so it is important to listen to your body. It is important to focus on aerobic exercises such as walking, swimming, or biking, one common recommendation is to complete 30 minutes of walking, swimming or biking at least three times a week. Once again it is important to remember that there is no competition when it comes to rehabilitation, everyone's body is different and reacts differently to different portions of aerobics. Slower paced practices include yoga or hot yoga, yoga uses deep breathing and slow movements to relax the body and keep fibromyalgia from flaring.
If you or anyone you know suffers from fibromyalgia or the symptoms of fibromyalgia do not hesitate to contact Comprehensive Healthcare Group, a physiatrist in Oceanside and Valley Stream today.
Thursday, June 14th, 2018
Whiplash is a common condition that causes pain in the neck and head specifically. The most common cause of whiplash is being involved in a car accident. Often times, when the car of the injured person is hit from behind, the force causes the passenger’s head to abruptly jerk forward and then backward. The intense impact can cause the muscles in the neck to stretch and sometimes tear. For a chiropractor in Oceanside or Valley Stream that treats whiplash, contact us here.
What are the symptoms of whiplash?
Whiplash can cause a variety of uncomfortable symptoms. Some of them include the following:
- Neck pain
- Ringing in the ear (tinnitus)
- Jaw pain
- Shoulder pain
- Back pain
Chiropractic treatments such as manual manipulation may help especially if the spine has been forced out of alignment from the injury. Studies have shown that chiropractic care is a great treatment option for back pain relief. For a chiropractor in Oceanside, visit our website here for more information.
How is it treated?
Receiving treatment quickly is important so that you can catch the injury before it worsens. In the past, doctors would give patients a soft cervical collar to immobilize and protect the injured soft tissues, but recent studies tell us otherwise. Keeping the neck mobile and practicing neck rotations to improve the range of motion can speed up the healing process. A visit with a chiropractor will provide you with a proper diagnosis and treatment regimen that is right for you.
Chiropractic treatments such as hot and cold therapy as well as range-of-motion exercises can be very beneficial for pain and stiffness. For a chiropractor in Oceanside, contact us here to make an appointment.
What is the prognosis for whiplash?
Depending on the severity of your injury, whiplash injuries usually heal within three months. For more mild injuries, the strained and/or sprained ligaments in the neck can take just a few days to weeks to heal. To receive non-invasive, safe and pharmaceutical-free treatment, contact us here to make an appointment with a chiropractor in Oceanside.