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Ergonomic Advice and Aides

Cell Phone Use

Ever wonder what happens when you spend all that time on your cell phone in this position?

Yep, you've got it! Your neck gets strained from all of that chin-to-chest neck positioning!

(And the woman in the image probably doesn’t even know why her neck is bothering her, or that time in this position can give her neck-generated headaches!)

Make your neck happy by getting that phone AWAY from your body!

Make your shoulders comfortable by propping your upper arms on your chest, and hold your phone in a position that keeps your chin up and away from your chest.

Laptop Computer Use

We know (or at least hope!) you don't sit like this.


But the typical head-forward posture of most folks on a laptop does create ongoing neck strain!

Tips to Avoid Neck Strain When Using Your Laptop

  1. Use a laptop stand. This lets you adjust your screen to the correct height that allows you to sit upright, and that keeps you from bending over to see the screen.

    With your head balanced over your neck, rather than hanging out in space without proper support, your neck does less work and experiences less strain.

    There are many good products on the market. The following is one example that our patients have found helpful.

    Laptop Table Stand Adjustable Riser - Offers multiple height and slant adjustments for use on a desk, or seated on a chair
  2. Place your screen at a 90 degree angle from your line of sight.
  3. Place the top of your screen at eye height, which allows you to sit upright with your head balanced over your neck.
  4. Use a separate keyboard and mouse (wireless products are convenient) with your laptop stand. This lets you keep the angle at your elbow at least at 90 degrees, which keeps your shoulders more relaxed.

    A laptop and laptop stand can fit conveniently into your laptop bag, which lets you stay productive (and neck-friendly!) from wherever you choose to work.
  5. Use an inclined document holder between the screen and keyboard when working with books or documents. This lets you avoid repeatedly looking down at documents on the flat desk, which puts you in a neck-straining, chin-to-chest posture.

    There are many good products on the market. The following is one example that our patients have found helpful.

    Easel Document Holder by Sparco (sold at Office Depot)
  6. Putting it all together with a picture:

Reading and Writing at a Desk

We recommend using slantboards, document holders, laptop holders, cell phone and tablet holders when writing or working at a desk. These aides reduce strain on irritated neck structures by keeping you out of the aggravating chin-to-chest postures required when you look down to view material on a flat desk surface.

Bookholder, Slantboard, Laptop Holder, Document Holder

The following link takes you to a multifunctional book holder, slantboard, laptop holder, document holder that our patients have found helpful.

Phone/Tablet Stands

Below are links to a few tablet and phone holders that help you maintain neutral neck position when viewing these devices. We recommend using a holder if you read or utilize an electronic device while you are laying down because it reduces the strain on irritated neck structures.