For many remote workers, working from home meant ditching suits for sweatpants and long commutes for later alarms. As of September, 45 percent of Americans are still taking advantage of their remote setup, according to a recent Gallup poll. But that doesn’t mean employees are more comfortable on their couches. Increased screen time and makeshift office furniture has strained our eyes and stiffened our joints over the last 18 months. Tech Ailments by State At Harmony Healthcare IT, our consultants are here to help health systems, hospitals and physicians navigate a dynamic industry. To find out how employees are getting through these unprecedented times, we analyzed Google search volume to determine the most common tech-related ailments, aches and pains Americans have been suffering due to our tech-obsessed lifestyles. The results are a real pain in the neck or rather, the hands. Wrist, hand and finger pain dominated as the most common tech ailment across the country, with 32 percent of states searching for a remedy online. Both lower joint pain and eye irritation claimed 16 percent, while neck pain bothered 14 percent of Americans. So, what technology caused so much pain? According to our research, it’s not work-related technology that’s afflicting us the most. Gaming addiction landed the top spot among tech ailment searches, followed by computer vision syndrome. And video games aren’t Americans’ only addiction. The third most popular search is “nomophobia” or the fear of being without your phone. Tech Ailments and COVID-19 It’s clear that the pandemic took its toll on Americans’ eyes, backs and joints. Since October of 2019, searches related to back pain from working at a computer increased by an astounding 142 percent. And between Zoom work calls, Zoom happy hours and Zoom conferences, Americans were glued to their screens more than ever. Perhaps that’s why we found a 78 percent increase in searches related to eye strain from working at a computer. All those stresses combined might explain the 40 percent increase in searches for all tech ailments since the start of COVID-19. If your order for a new chair for your home office was delayed, you weren’t the only one trying to fix your posture. Searches for the best desk chair for back pain have skyrocketed by 392 percent and searches for the best office chair for back pain went up by 236 percent since October 2019. All that increased time on phones and computers didn’t come without a cost either: searches for headaches related to screen time increased by 255 percent over the same period. Some Americans may have also unfortunately discovered a new term over the last year: cybersickness. Searches for cybersickness, a cluster of symptoms that includes dizziness, eye fatigue and disorientation caused by staring at screens for prolonged periods of time, grew by 171 percent during the pandemic. As dependency on technology in both work and personal life continues to increase, it will be interesting to see what steps Americans take in order to prevent tech-related aches, pains and ailments. Methodology We analyzed Google search volume queries related to technology aches and pains in every state to determine the most disproportionately popular terms. Our analysis also included increases in tech-related ailment queries since October 2019. For media inquiries, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.