Dr. Jason Sparks - Spine & Orthopedic Specialists

Tulsa was recently named as one of the best cities for small businesses. According to a February 23, 2020 Fox 23 News report, a program drawing remote workers to the area is partly responsible. While tech jobs mean a brighter financial outlook for residents, they also the risk of back and neck pain.

Tech Workers at Increased Risk For Back and Neck Pain

Tulsa has transformed into a hub for IT businesses over the last decade and a new program is drawing even more companies and residents to the area. Tulsa Remote offers workers a $10,000 grant and other benefits for relocating here. The same day the city was named one of the best for small businesses, Tulsa World reported that Flipcause, a major software developer based in California, will be using our area as a hub. It will rely on Tulsa Remote to meet staffing needs.

While this is good news for the tech community, underlying issues on the job threaten the health of workers. “Poor desk posture and the impact of looking at a computer screen all day have put tech workers at risk for orthopedic issues,” says Dr. Jason Sparks of Spine & Orthopedic Specialists Tulsa. “Chronic back and neck pain is an increasingly common problem.”

Back and Neck Issues Among IT Workers

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) warns sitting and staring at a computer screen for long hours puts tech workers at higher risk for neck and shoulder issues. These can have major impacts on other areas of the spine. Among the most common problems include:

  • Posterior cervical dorsal syndrome, or ‘computer back’, which causes curving of the spine;
  • Cervical kyphosis, or ‘tech neck’, which causes the neck to be abnormally straight, losing its natural curve;
  • Lumbar strains and sprains, impacting muscles, joints, tendons, and ligaments;
  • Pressure on the vertebrae, resulting in bulging or herniated discs.

“For tech workers, workplace ergonomics play a major role in preventing back and neck pain,” says Dr. Sparks. “If you are currently suffering pain or discomfort, seek medical care immediately. Delaying treatment could result in permanent disabilities.”