If you want to be in the know, let me be the first to inform you that – neck pain is the ‘new’ low back pain (LBP). Historically, LBP has been the number one complaint of patients under chiropractic care. In regard to our experience here at PAC, however, neck complaints top the list. The most surprising part is that we are finding this to be the case throughout all age groups, from grade-schoolers to seniors. Could there be a common thread? My sense is “yes”, and I will suggest that increasing levels of computer use are at the heart of it.
Whether you call it the computer revolution, or the digital lifestyle, the reality is that every major demographic group shows increased computer usage. From a physical health standpoint, this is bad news. One does not have to go out on a limb to say that the human body is not designed to sit at a computer workstation for 8+ hrs/day (we would look more like a mushroom). I am willing to go further out and actually guarantee physical compromise will occur if these computer hours are also spent in poor posture. To date, the most common physical compromise we are seeing is neck pain.
This will be the first in a series of discussions on the topic of computer-user health. Upcoming issues will examine computer posture, how to use a laptop without killing your neck, and the most important factor in computer ergonomics.