If you sit at your desk or in front of a computer for more than 5 hours a day, chances are you've suffered neck, back and shoulder pain. italk tells you why ignoring that ache could lead to serious joint damage
While the heart and brain continue to be the most crucial organs in the human body, ignoring vulnerable areas like the neck, back and shoulder could cost you as much. Many working professionals complain of, yet avoid seeking treatment, problems related to these areas.
SRK had to pay a heavy price for ignoring a much-needed shoulder surgery. After hurting the ligament of his left shoulder during a shoot in December, the actor had been in constant pain. But King Khan decided to put off the surgery, since he wanted to promote his home production, Billu. The surgery has been scheduled for February 16 at the Breach Candy Hospital. pic/NARENDRA DANGIYA
Dismissing these problems as mere "outcomes of a stressful life" could be dangerous, says Dr Jawahar S Panjwani, Orthopaedic Surgeon at Lilavati Hospital. "Problems related to the back, neck and shoulder are extremely common among professionals. The clinical picture can vary from minor aches and pains prompting repeated visits to doctors and increased consumption of pain killers, to full-blown problems muscle/tendon inflammation (tendonitis), ruptures of tendons, even wear and tear of joints (arthritis)." Dr Panjwani attributes these aches to:
>>Increased use of computers.
>>Mounting work pressure and demanding deadlines that increase muscle tension, causing increased oxygen demand by the muscle and resulting in spasm and inflammation.
>>Lack of exposure to sunlight, which causes Vitamin D deficiency.
>>Irregular eating habits.
>>Carrying heavy laptops and bags, to and from office.
>>Looking down for extended periods without breaks.
>>Cradling the phone between the neck and shoulder.
Dr Panjwani also says that chronic neck/low back pain leads to blinding headaches, especially at the back of the head.
What is the shoulder-and-neck-strain-syndrome (SNSS)?
SNSS is the most common musculo-skeletal disorder for the upper body. The symptoms range from a "tight neck", with or without headaches, to a severely-incapacitated neck, shoulder, arm and wrist.
This pain is usually felt in:
>>The neck and upper shoulders.
>>The shoulder joint area or arm.
>>Solely in the head and shoulders.
Who is vulnerable?
>>Short women working at a desk.
>>Those who've suffered a whiplash injury of the neck.
>>Long-waisted, short-armed individuals.
>>Those with chronic allergies.
>>Dentists, hairdressers, computer operators and keyboard operators, working without forearm support.
This is how you can avoid it:
>>When sitting at your desk, sit straight and make sure your lower back is supported. Put a small pillow between your lower back and chair.
>>If you work at a computer, make sure the monitor is at eye level.
>>If you spend a great deal of time on the phone, consider a headset. If that's not possible, avoid cradling the phone on your shoulder.
>>Avoid sitting in the same position for long periods of time.
The pain's in your destiny!
RD Pala, Astrogemologist
RD Pala, Astrogemologist, says that the head, neck and shoulder are ruled by specific signs. The head is ruled by sun sign, Aries, which in turn is ruled by planet Mars. Similarly, the neck and shoulders are ruled by Taurus and Gemini respectively, whose ruling planets are Venus and Mercury. According to the vulnerabilities in the horoscope and certain weaknesses of planets, corresponding problems arise in the areas ruled by that planet.
This is the reason why different individuals who belong to the same field of work, don't face similar medical problems, Pala believes.
Yoga comes to the rescue
Shameem Akhtar, Yoga Expert, suggests some easy Yoga poses to help cure neck, back and shoulder pain
>>Done seated. Move chair slightly away from desk, at arms length. Sit on chair.
>>Inhale, raising arms overhead. Cup either elbow.
>>Exhaling, bend forehead, placing elbows on table, with head hanging between hands, forehead resting at table edge.
>>Hold the pose, feeling the gush of blood to the head and face.
>>Breathe normally. Relax, return to starting position.
How it works: It gives a powerful traction to the spine and is excellent in treating upper body stiffness, neck pain and aches.
>>May be done seated or standing.
>>Inhale. Pass right hand over the shoulder, palm down. Then pass left hand behind, to grasp right hand.
>>Exhale. Hook fingers. Hold for a few seconds, with normal breathing.
>>Relax hold. Repeat for other side.
Points to note: If you can't make contact between both hands, hold a handkerchief between the hands.
How it works: It's therapeutic for most spinal ailments and is used to treat body stiffness arising from problems like blood pressure, diabetes and obesity.
>>May be done standing or seated.
>>Inhale, passing your hands behind.
>>Exhale, bringing palms together. You must make a namaste gesture.
>>Continue normal breathing. Release. Repeat a few times.
Points to note: Those with very stiff bodies may not be able to bring their hands together. But regular practice will rectify this.
How it works: It is a gentle, but powerful rectifier of spinal defects. It opens up the soft muscle tissue.