Forward Head Posture (FHP) is the most common posture disorder and can lead to serious health problems. This condition usually occurs in individuals who spend long hours at work. In the short term, FHP can cause dizziness, light-headedness, and an increased risk of a stroke. In the long run, it increases your risk for heart disease and diabetes. To be able to prevent these health risks and still keep your neck healthy, try these two forward head posture stretches that will help alleviate stress on your neck muscles.
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Forward Head Posture Causes
People may associate FHP with long periods, such as cell phones or computers. However, any activity that causes a person to lean their head forward for extended periods can lead to chronic FHP.
Some causes include the following:
- Arthritis and bone degeneration
- Sleeping with head raised
- Reading in bed
- Weakness in the muscle at the upper back
- Carrying a heavy backpack or purse
Side Effect of Forwarding Head Posture
Having a “nerd neck” is not just uncomfortable, it can cause all sorts of neuro-musculoskeletal and cardiovascular consequences. The muscles, joints, and nerves in the neck are under undue pressure because of the way that your posture affects them.
As such there’s an increased risk for upper back pain (which can be mistaken for tension headaches), shoulder pain, and neck pain as well as herniated discs or other injuries from falls. It also contributes to “tension headache syndrome” which often results in feeling like you’ve got a tight muscle somewhere else on your body!
Your changed center of balance makes you more prone to falling – resulting in further complications!
How Can You Prevent It?
Forward head posture can be corrected through lifestyle changes:
Use Firm Pillow
If your pillow is either too high or too low, it could cause your head to lie in an overtaxed position – all night long every day. The resulting muscle imbalance can be hard to correct! So instead of choosing a firm pillow that supports the natural curve of your neck, choose one that keeps you in a neutral position.
Adjust your Backpack
Choose a backpack that’s proportional to your body. Taking out unnecessary items is to reduce the weight you’re carrying, and try positioning anything heavy near the center of your back for less strain on shoulders as well. Avoid carrying your bag with one strap at all costs – it will cause too much pressure on just one side of the neck!
Make your Workstation Ergonomic
When we sit at desks all day, our bodies are in a static position. When this is repeated over time, it can cause pain and other issues- like carpal tunnel syndrome that affects the wrists and hands. Improving posture involves placing your feet firmly on the ground with elbows at 90 degrees when you rest your arms on a desktop. The screen should also be positioned about an arm’s length away from where you’re sitting so that it doesn’t look too close to watch the content or distract from what’s happening around you.
Stretching will help you manage forward head posture. It is a good idea to stretch your back and neck before going to bed or during the day when possible. The following are the stretches you can do to help manage your forward head posture:
1. Neck Rotation
Make sure that you are in a good posture. Rotate your neck to the left then rotate to the right. Do one set, rotating 5 times in each direction, and hold the end position for 2 seconds.
2. 45 Degree Neck Stretch
45 Degree Neck Stretch
Start in an upright position with great alignment from the side like; head over the shoulders and hips.
Rotate to 45 degrees, then drop your forehead towards your armpit. Look for a light stretch on the opposite side from where you dropped your forehead. Hold this for 20 seconds. Go through one set; twice on each side alternating. Look for a light stretch in the neck area.
So, give those two stretches a go. I am certain that these will help you fix your forward head posture.
Posture is an important part of staying healthy. Your posture can not only affect how your body feels, but it can also have a direct impact on your health and wellness. Try those two stretches to help with forwarding head posture that you might find helpful.
If you want to get rid of your text neck, fix your posture in order to move, sleep and breathe better then click here to check out the Forward Head Posture FIX program.