For those living with arthritis, repetitive motion may exacerbate joint pain.1 Yet it’s hard to imagine life without texting friends, connecting with family on Facebook, and surfing the internet for cute cat videos—all of which require precise, repeated movements of your hands and joints in ways that can be terribly painful for arthritis patients.
Luckily, some tech companies have made it easy to enable accessibility features to give your scrolling thumb a break. Well-known aids like Apple’s voice assistant, Siri, can help you use your phone via voice commands instead of your hands. But there are lesser-known tools built into your iPhone and iPad that provide arthritis relief such as using head gestures to navigate.
If you’re not familiar with these options, you’re not alone: Many people have no idea their smartphone is really that smart. Let’s introduce you to head-gesture navigation with this step-by-step guide.
If you’ve made it this far, congratulations! Your prize is never having to strain your joints scrolling through text messages again! And because the phone easily captures your movement, you don’t have to worry about throwing your neck out.
To recap, here’s a shortcut list: Settings > General > Accessibility > Switch Control. Tap that and toggle it on. Then, Switches > Add New Switch > Camera and then assign your desired actions to left and right head gestures.
For a larger look at all the accessibility features offered by Apple that can help you manage joint pain, take a look at their Accessibility website. Android devices and Apple laptops offer similar services but may require downloading additional apps.
Now you can navigate this website using just your head. Give it a try!
To make this website easier to use, we developed arthritis-friendly controls and features. It’s been tested by real arthritis patients.