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Tips for Using Smartphone Ergonomically

Smartphones are a part of everyday life. Many use their smartphones for business and leisure activities such as playing games, watching Netflix movies or sports on Fubo TV. The tiny devices make for good communication, ways to be entertained, and a way for children to even stay occupied for a bit. However, just because they are small in size doesn’t mean that they should be used without any regard for physical well-being. With many people on their smartphones for hours at a time, it’s no wonder that ergonomic issues arise.

Smartphone with apps
Smartphone with apps

Whether you’re using your smartphone for just a few minutes or a few hours, it’s important to take a look at how you’re using it because this could be the difference between a pain-free life and one with annoying stress injuries. The good news is that there are several ergonomic tips that you can use to minimize the strain that using your smartphone often can cause on your body. Although, it may take some time to get used to making these changes, it will be well worth trying because your neck, back, and hands will be protected.

Improve posture

Your posture is probably the most important thing to consider when using your smartphone. Pay attention to how your posture is while you’re using your phone. Don’t hunch your back and instead, hold your smartphone near chest level rather than at your waist. This helps with maintaining the natural curvature of the spine and will reduce neck strain and pain. It is important to not look straight down at your phone when lying down in a comfortable position while using it. Also, try to avoid cradling the phone between your ear and shoulder because this can really increase upper back and neck strain that can really be uncomfortable. Always be mindful of your posture, even while standing. It’s crucial to keep your beck and spine aligned as much as possible.

Don’t strain eyes

To minimize strain on your eyes, always keep a reasonable distance between the screen and your eyes. Don’t bring your smartphone too close to your face and don’t squint when looking at the screen. Aim to keep your phone about one to two feet away from your eyes to avoid straining.

Use speaker phone

Holding the phone to your ear with your hands for long periods of time can lead to fatigue, so when you can, opt to use a Bluetooth headset or put your call on speaker phone. No, you don’t have to have important phone calls on speaker while sitting in the middle of a crowded restaurant, but whenever circumstances allow it, it is highly recommended. Holding a phone up to your ear is not natural, and doing it for too long becomes uncomfortable. Over periods of time, it can lead to aches, pains, and sometimes much worse. If you do need to hold your phone to your ear for phone calls, be sure to switch hands often, loosen your grip, and relax your arm as much as possible.

Limit long texts

When it comes to typing long texts or emails, try not to do so on your smartphone. Typing for too long on such a small keyboard can cause your fingers to cramp up. Texting is quick, easy, and can be addictive, but if you’re doing it all day long or constantly typing long paragraphs, you may want to rethink things. Going on long typing or texting sprees can have similar effects to typing on a keyboard for long periods of time, including Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. However, if you are going to keep typing on your phone, keep your wrists straight when holding and tapping, use a protective phone case that improves your grip, and use predictive text features and auto complete which can reduce how much you’re typing.

Proper Lighting

Woman holding smartphone
Woman holding smartphone

Make sure that the room you’re using your phone in has adequate lighting so that you can see what is on your screen. Sometimes you may need to adjust the settings on your device to see better and that’s perfectly fine. Make sure that there are no glares that mess up your eyesight, even for just a few moments. Outside lighting is great, especially during the day, so using your phone outdoors is a great idea.

Take breaks

It’s so important to limit the time spent on your device. This is the best way to reduce any strain or discomfort that could come from not using your phone correctly. Everyone has moments where they’re consumed by whatever it is they may be doing on their smartphone. You get so caught up by social media or online pokerstars casino games that you forget to take a break. Taking a timeout from your phone is so important. Set it down, charge it, and do something else. Go for a walk, eat a snack, or read a book to take your mind off of being on your smartphone.