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"Text Neck" and typing/texting with ME/CFS

Discussion in 'General ME/CFS Discussion' started by Horizon, Oct 3, 2016.

  1. Horizon

    Horizon Senior Member

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    How do you guys deal with texting or typing while lying down? I keep getting neck and shoulder pain. I find holding the phone above me is too exerting and hurts but if it's down flat next to me i get neck pain.
     
  2. RogerBlack

    RogerBlack Senior Member

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    I mostly use - when very fatigued - a keyboard under the covers. One with a trackpoint. This is most excellent - as I don't need to move my arms at all, and can lay almost flat, with just my head propped up a little.
    Monitor over the edge of the bed.
     
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  3. purrsian

    purrsian Senior Member

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    Using a phone or tablet, I lie on my side so my arms are resting beside me instead of out in front of me. I have to put orientation lock on so that the screen doesn't turn when I turn the phone/tablet that way. I tend to turn from one side to the other regularly to avoid getting stiff. For texting, you can also use Siri (for iPhone) or Cortana (for Microsoft phones) to write the texts from your voice. I'm sure most phones these days would have something along these lines, just try googling something like "how to write texts from speech on (insert type of phone)". On iPhone, you can also send voice memos I think.

    Using a laptop, I rest it on my lap with my knees up if I can, so that the keyboard is easy to reach. I'm usually positioned with pillows so my head is slightly propped up.

    If I have my legs down and the laptop flat on my thighs, I prefer to have it on a laptop tray (like a stable table) for a bit of extra height. As my left arm is a little higher (the one that's always on the keyboard) I like to put a small cushion or something to prop up my elbow, so it takes less energy to hold my hand on the keyboard. I usually have a proper mouse (I play games on my laptop) so I keep that on the bed beside me and position it and the mousepad so I can lay my arm out relatively straight. A cordless mouse can be a good option so it is easier to move on and off the bed as required.

    I also sometimes use a neck pillow (like people use on planes) for a little extra support for my neck if it starts to get sore.

    If you are using a desktop computer instead (wasn't sure what you meant by monitor but thought maybe you didn't have a laptop?) you can also buy cordless keyboards. I got a cordless keyboard and mouse set from JB Hifi for only $20 and they work great.

    Another option is an over-bed table on wheels. I got one from Aldi (they have them again this weekend for anyone in Aus) which I sometimes put my laptop on. If you go this way, I recommend keeping the mouse down beside you still, as it's much less tiring, and use something to prop up your elbow.

    Sorry for the long message, I spend a lot of time with computers and have trialled lots of options to make things easier when I'm not good lol I tend to have quite the collection of stuff in bed... I think it makes life much easier on a bad day. Good thing I have the whole queen bed to myself (fiance sleeps out the back now as we sleep different hours), I can't fit another person in here - only enough for me, my computers and my kitties teehee :cat::redface::cat:
     
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  4. AndyPandy

    AndyPandy Making the most of it

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    Australia
    iPad or phone propped against a pillow on my stomach in bed.
     
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  5. Skippa

    Skippa Anti-BS

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    Is your head or neck supported.

    I got a wedge shaped pillow, about 12 bucks on amazon, that can go either way (low incline or steep incline) and I then fold my pillow on top of it too.

    Also an over bed table that tilts to support the device, hands and arms.

    My office now has an armchair and padded foot rest, and an over chair table for the mouse/keyboard so I can be quite supine if needed. And a wall support bolted on for the screen, to swing it closer the more laid back I am.
     
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  6. ahimsa

    ahimsa Senior Member

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    When I'm online I don't use a phone. I use a laptop (with a padded lap desk) and I lean back in a recliner chair with my feet up. My head and neck are leaning back on the recliner so they are fully supported.

    I don't know how I'd manage if I was completely horizontal in bed or on the couch. I agree that might cause neck/shoulder pains.

    If I had to be fully horizontal, and could not use a regular keyboard, then I'd probably use voice recognition software instead. I would hate to try to use those simulated "keyboards" available on smartphones/tablets for anything longer than a short text message.

    I'm sitting sort of like the photo below, but my head is resting on the back of my chair (she's holding her head up), my elbows are more supported, and I'm using a lap desk (she's not). And sometimes I cross my legs instead of stretching them out fully (I shift positions now and then).

    recliner-laptop.jpg

    @Horizon, I hope you find a solution that works for you. Neck and shoulder pain is bad news! :(

    PS. My hands/arms could not hold a phone for more than a few minutes anyway without getting muscle aches later. I use a headset when I talk on the phone.
     
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  7. purrsian

    purrsian Senior Member

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    Ahisma's post actually reminded me of another option for tablets. My fiancé bought me a bright pink Bluetooth keyboard (which I love cos it's so pink!) which I use with my iPad sometimes. You could connect to a phone to write longer messages. You just need to prop up your tablet somewhere, then have a keyboard wherever you can rest you're arms the most comfortable. He got it for like $6 at Kmart, so good budget option.
     
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