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For those fortunate enough to work from home now, and potentially for an extended time as we phase into reopening the economy, the spine specialist at Orthopedic Specialists & Sports Medicine has developed posture and ergonomic tips to help avoid back and neck pain. Patients in need of specialized back, neck or spine care are encouraged to call (740) 788-9220 to schedule a safe and secure telehealth appointment with the specialty-trained providers at Orthopedic Specialists & Sports Medicine.

“Poor posture can have a significant impact on your health, and according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 50% of American workers spend more than 30% of their workday sitting,” says Dr. Benjamin Burkett, fellowship-trained spine surgeon at Orthopedic Specialists & Sports Medicine. “During this unprecedented time in our lives, many may find themselves sitting even more while working at home and using nontraditional workspaces where ergonomics are not ideal.

“If you’re in pain or sitting for long hours, your energy, mood and metabolism can drop, and we want to help our community take control and feel as good as possible, especially in times of added stress,” continues Dr. Burkett. “To help area residents protect their spine health during this unfortunate time, we created a list of helpful tips to follow to avoid back and neck pain.”

When working remotely, at home or in a nontraditional workspace, follow these tips to avoid back and neck pain:

  • Check your head and neck posture: Your monitor should be directly in front of you with the screen at eye level. Try to keep your laptop and smart device screens at eye level as well, which may mean placing them upright on a table or desk. Your neck and shoulders should be in a relaxed, natural position.
  • Check your overall posture: Your head should be directly above your neck, without pushing it forward. Your hips should be as far back as possible in your chair, and your elbows should stay close to your body. Avoid hunching over.
  • Get up and stretch: Give yourself a few minutes every hour to stand up, walk around and do some light stretches.
  • Add cushioning: If your chair is uncomfortable, try placing a pillow, towel or blanket down for extra support.
  • Find what works for you: Try working from different areas around your house, such as your couch, kitchen table or bed. Be mindful of your body's response to your office setup; if you feel discomfort, make adjustments.

“If you do experience back or neck pain while working from home, we are here to help you,” says Dr. Burkett. “Quality of life is as crucial as ever, and we remain committed to offering top-tier care to keep our friends and neighbors throughout the region healthy and happy because we are all in this together.”

As quarantining during COVID-19 continues, the providers at Orthopedic Specialists & Sports Medicine are offering telehealth appointments to provide remote consultation for bone, joint and muscle problems. In the event of a fall or other accident, Orthopedic Specialists & Sports Medicine’s Orthopedic Urgent Care also continues to offer immediate care for urgent orthopedic injuries, such as sprains, fractures or dislocations. Orthopedic Urgent Care is available at the practice’s Newark office at 1980 Tamarack Road, where the practice is taking all necessary precautions for the health and safety of their patients and staff.

To learn more or to schedule an appointment with one of the experts at Orthopedic Specialists & Sports Medicine, please call (740) 788-9220.