Neck Pain When Looking Up

Many jobs require working above your head, but this can lead to several issues including pain and tightness in the neck and back. 

Looking up for long periods places increased strain on the bones of the neck and back, particularly on a portion called the facets.  These facets help guide motion of the vertebrae, but when you look up increased weight is placed on the facets in the posterior portion of the bones, rather than the discs in front.  Prolonged neck extension can lead to muscle tightness, fatigue, headache, and joint pain.  The increased pressure and wear on the facets of the neck and back can lead to early joint degeneration and arthritis.  Muscles in the front of the neck can become strained and fatigued.

One way to reduce strain from working overhead is to bring the work closer to you.  You can use a stepladder to avoid having to look up and reach.  Try to position yourself to avoid fully extending your neck.

Periodic rest breaks to stretch the neck and upper back help prevent muscle tightness and ligament creep.

Chiropractic care can help relieve neck tightness, stiffness, and pain associated with looking up or working overhead.  Contact your Chiropractor if you have these symptoms or work-related injuries.