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Your Fall Checklist Item #4 Keep Your Neck Happy

3 Tips to reduce neck strain
Being back at school and work can often mean neck pain returns.  Increased levels of stress, helping your child carry heavy back packs, and every day life, can show up in the form of neck and shoulder pain.  If you get neck and shoulder pain, try these 3 easy tips:
1. Tuck your chin back so that your head is centered over your shoulders (make a double chin) – as your head creeps forward, all of the muscles of the back of the neck need to engage to stop our head from tipping forward. Tucking your chin/head back even just a little could make a huge difference.
2. Squeeze your shoulder blades back and down – as your shoulders creep forward, they can pull on our spine and ribs which can create discomfort. Tuck them down and back – do NOT shrug your shoulders as this will increase the tension.
Get your kids to use tips #1 and #2 when carrying their heavy back packs.
3. Get a new pillow!  You spend 1/3 of your life in bed – it’s worth having a good pillow as your head/neck spends so much time resting on it!  Make sure it is supportive – it should be firm enough to rise up to meet the curve of your neck, but soft enough to not push your head into a side-bent position.  A neutral neck position is best.  A pillow that is too soft or too firm is not helpful – it needs to be somewhere in the middle to support your neck.  If you aren’t sure if yours is a good one, feel free to bring it in and ask us!
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