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  • Writer's pictureErienne Blanchard

Neck Pain at Dinner?

Have you stopped going out with friends or stopped choosing the big social gatherings because your neck hurts to turn and look at people. Do you find yourself rubbing your neck or putting your back to others in order to hear the person next to you? These are common issues with mobility deficits (inability to turn the neck further) or with coordination impairments (unable to keep that position long).

People seated and eating around a filled thanksgiving dinner

Okay, so these happen more commonly than I thought, this does not help me to return to my activities. What can I do?

  • Choose a position at the table that may maximize your ability to see more people such as the end or a corner end that allows you to move the edge of the table as discussion continues.

  • Try to choose a round table at a restaurant to allow for easier few of others

  • Be deliberate about choosing your seat across from the person you are most interested in speaking to especially for larger gatherings.

People facing each other eating a thanksgiving meal outdoors

What can I do if none of these options are available? It may be an uncomfortable discussion in which you may have to turn your back to the person directly to your next side in order to speak more comfortably to the person next to you. The best thing is to explain this to the people around you, and you may be very surprised at how they assist in accommodating you to decrease your discomfort and include you in the conversation. Most of us understand difficulties and want to include others by helping to minimize their discomfort. Honesty is the best policy to continue to include you in the groups.

Be deliberate about the table and your chair as well as the person you wish to speak to in order to minimize your pain. Ask for help from those around. You will be surprised how they will have creative solutions to help.

A place setting that states happy thanksgiving

I hope your family time is wonderful this season and that you can experience less pain while enjoying the food, conversation, and fun. If you need help, please reach out for assistance as we can improve your movement and decrease pain quickly with just a few appointments to prepare you for the fun of your Thanksgiving.

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