Modern Migraine MD

Is Working From Home a Pain in Your Neck?

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Is Working From Home a Pain in Your Neck?
If you’ve developed neck pain since you started working from home, you’re not alone. Poor habits and bad ergonomics can trigger acute and chronic neck pain. Keep reading to learn more about this condition and how we can help.

Medical researchers report that at least 25% of US adults suffer from neck pain. With more and more Americans working from home (WFH), neck pain could become an even bigger problem.

WFH can lead to new or worsening neck pain because of different factors, including ergonomics, posture, and bad habits. The good news is that board-certified neurologist Risa Ravitz, MD, and the team at Modern Migraine MD have solutions to ease the pain in your neck—and prevent it from returning. 

At our locations in Manhattan, NYC, Toms River, New Jersey, Aventura, Florida, and virtually in 13 states, our providers personalize neck pain treatments that address the underlying cause of your condition. 

Keep reading to learn more about the link between WFH and neck pain and the ways we can help you find relief.     

How WFH can trigger neck pain

Working from home can be a great opportunity, giving you more flexibility and eliminating lengthy commutes. Unfortunately, however, WFH can also create more opportunities for conditions that lead to neck pain. 

Not using proper posture, poor ergonomics, too much screen time, and lack of movement can all contribute to neck pain. This is because these factors make it more likely for your head to lean forward, out of the neutral position. 

Consider the angle of your head when you look down at your laptop or scroll through emails or work messages on your phone. Tipping your head forward and down like that puts stress on your neck. 

This stress puts pressure on your cervical spine and can move discs out of position. It can also strain the muscles, ligaments, and nerves, leading to inflammation and other issues, such as:

  • Migraines
  • Headaches
  • Pinched nerves
  • Slipped or herniated discs
  • Pulled muscles and ligaments
  • Nerve-related symptoms (e.g., tingling, pins & needles)

It can also cause any degenerative conditions to worsen.    

Evaluating and treating WFH neck pain

If you’re working from home and have noticed new or worsening neck pain, it’s important to see a specialist, like the providers at Modern Migraine MD, for an evaluation. An underlying issue could be the cause, and it’s important to rule out any complications. 

Your provider evaluates your symptoms and medical history and conducts a physical exam to get to the root cause of your pain. At Modern Migraine MD, your provider creates a personalized neck pain treatment plan based on your unique needs. 

For some patients, this may involve tips on posture and how to ergonomically set up your home office to avoid neck pain. It may also mean taking an anti-inflammatory medication to help with pain and any swelling or learning strengthening exercises, stretching, and how to avoid neck stressors. 

Other people benefit from therapeutic treatments, such as spinal decompression, therapeutic massage, acupuncture, physical therapy, or gentle yoga. Be sure to talk to your provider before starting any of these therapies.   

For patients whose neck pain doesn’t respond to these conservative treatments, Dr. Ravitz may recommend other modalities, including:

  • Steroid injections
  • Nerve blocks
  • Radiofrequency ablation
  • Minimally invasive surgery

If you’re struggling with WFH-related neck pain, get expert help by scheduling an in-person or virtual appointment with Dr. Ravitz at Modern Migraine MD.