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4 Ways to Stop Computer-Related Back Pain

By Amber Page

For many of us, working on a computer is an unavoidable part of our daily lives. Unfortunately, the tools we rely on to do our jobs can cause significant back and neck problems if not used properly.

If you're experiencing back and neck pain caused by your computer, try using these tips from the American Chiropractic Association to alleviate your symptoms.

Make Sure You're Using Your Mouse Properly

First things first: make sure you have the right size mouse for your hand. If it's too small or too large, you won't be able to grip it properly, which can cause neck, shoulder and back strain.

Position your mouse in front of you so that you can sit with your elbows relaxed at your sides and remove any bracelets, watches or activity trackers that could interfere with the way you use it.

Try to move the mouse with your whole arm to reduce potential strain. If you're doing super precise work with your mouse, try to use your wrist, not your fingers, to prevent carpal tunnel.

Position Your Monitor Correctly

Your monitor should be centered in front of you, with the top of the screen even with your eye level.

If you have more than one monitor, center the one you use the most and place the secondary monitor slightly off to the side and angled toward you.

Finally, avoid unnecessary strain by using a glare filter and adjusting the brightness and contrast to be even.

Mind Your Posture

Sit with your feet on the ground and your back straight. Avoid hunching over your computer screen because this can cause a myriad of back problems.

Make sure your chair fits your properly. The back should provide good lumbar support when you're seated in the upright position, and the armrests should be able to support your elbows and forearms.

Take Regular Breaks

Sitting too long at a computer is just plain bad for you, so make time to stand up and walk around when you can. 

If you're too busy to get up and move, take micro breaks at your desk. Look away from your computer at something at least 20 feet away and shake out your arms and wrists. You should also do some quick stretches, even if that's just rolling your neck a few times and doing forward bends in your chair.

For chronic back and neck problems caused by your work situation, see a chiropractor. They can perform spinal alignments to relieve pain and restore pain and suggest exercises and ergonomic changes to solve the underlying problems.

To learn more about your health, wellness and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Mesquite, Tex.

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