Healthy Computing: Use a Headset

Do you tuck the phone when you multi-task, such as searching the computer
for information to answer a question? This habit of raising one shoulder
and tilting your head in an asymmetrical position causes excessive muscle
contractions and reduces blood flow to the muscles. Arm, wrist and hand
symptoms often become aggravated. Reduce tension and lighten the strain in
your neck and shoulders when you USE A HEADSET.


Use a headset when talking on the phone while simultaneously performing
other tasks such as data entry and writing notes. Headsets are economical
and lightweight and most have good sound quality. Headsets are readily
available for portable and cell phones -making it easier to talk while
working, walking, driving, gardening, cooking or sipping a cooler. Test
ride different models until you find the one that is comfortable.

If you do not have a headset and must multi-task when conversing on the

  • Do only one task at a time. Put the person on hold, put the phone down,
    take a breath and smile, perform the task and then pick up the phone and
    continue your conversation.

  • Use a speakerphone.
  • Hold the handset with your hand while talking; switch sides during the

If you absolutely must tuck the phone, do so infrequently and for very
short periods of time. Practice frequent neck and shoulder relaxation
and alternate sides.

Avoid attachable phone rests that claim to make tucking more comfortable.
They DO NOT significantly reduce neck and shoulder tension.

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Written by Erik Peper PhD

Explore Wellness in 2021