A forward head posture involves problems in the neck, shoulders and chest area allowing the head to exert more weight on the cervical spine. It is commonly experienced by people working in front of the computer or in desks. As one focuses on the monitor, the head commonly assumes a forward position to allow the person to gaze properly on the text. When this posture is employed for prolonged periods, the neck usually suffers because a forward head posture increases the weight of the head that the neck holds by fourfold. A forward head posture may eventually lead to cervical muscle strain and even cervical osteoarthritis making it a concern for people. If you feel that you have been suffering from forward head posture and been feeling neck pain, the following measures can help you correct the condition:
• Recognize that forward head posture can be corrected. Forward head posture is easily preventable and if you already have it, it is also easily correctable.
• Avoid practices and conditions that may aggravate the condition. One of the best ways to correct a poor posture is to stop doing things that may cause it. In case of a forward head posture, limit the number of hours that you work in front of a computer. However, if you cannot go without it because of your work, better be aware of your posture while working.
• Employ strengthening exercises of the neck. The neck is the main area that needs to be strengthened. There are various strengthening exercises that can be employed to directly correct forward head posture in no time. These include:
• Lying head raise
Lay face down with the hands behind the neck and the fingers intertwined. Lift the head towards the ceiling. This allows the neck to bend backwards and help the neck return to its neutral position.
• Chin Tuck
Chin tuck is also another effective exercise to correct forward head posture. Do this while standing or sitting straight. Stick your chin out for three seconds. Next, stick your chin inwards as far as it can go and hold for three seconds. Repeat the stretch for 6 times.
• Chest stretch
Stretching your chest is another effective method to correct a forward head posture. Stand in front of one corner of the wall. Lean your arms on the wall with the elbow joint in a 90 degree angle. Hold the stretch for 20 seconds.
• Be aware of your posture. When you are already observing a forward head posture, try to lift your chest and keep your head high and neutral. This will help loosen the trapezius muscles and correct forward head posture.
• Get an ergonomic computer table and chair and position the computer monitor appropriately. One of the main reasons for a forward head posture is poorly situated computer monitor and incorrect height of the desk and chair. In this line, make sure that when you gaze on the computer, your eyes are in line with the upper third of monitor to ensure that you won’t gaze downwards when you work.
A forward head posture can cause more serious neck injuries in the future so correcting it early is a good way to prevent degenerative diseases in the neck. Be aware of your posture and recognize the presence of pain along the neck and shoulders to address a forward head posture early.