Everyone is vulnerable to neck pain. It’s usually triggered by a lot of things, such as having a bad posture, carrying heavyweight, sleeping in a bad position, or it may be a manifestation of an illness. Usually, neck pain is something not to worry about, but it may still cause discomfort that may prevent you from doing your daily task productively.
Fortunately, most neck pain improves with home remedies and proper treatment in a couple of days. Here are some helpful tips that you can do to alleviate neck pain:
Do Therapeutic Exercises
One way to reduce inflammation is to keep moving, but avoid movements or activities that may further stress the area. Avoid exercises such as weight lifting, crunches, or sit-ups, as these can strain your neck further. You may do simple stretching or slow range-of-motion exercises. Yoga is the most common therapeutic exercise to effectively deal with neck pain.
It’s thought that non-invasive treatments, such as therapeutic exercises, tend to have long-term outcomes. If you can’t perform exercises due to other conditions, you may use a massager. To ensure that you’ll get the effective one and won’t aggravate the pain, make sure to research the best neck massager in town before purchasing.
Take Over-The-Counter Medicine
OTC medicines, such as ibuprofen, naproxen sodium, or acetaminophen, are thought to help reduce the pain. If you’re pregnant, you may need to consult your doctor if you can take any medications. On the safe side, it’s best to consider applying topicals, like cream, gels, or patches, for pain relief. For extreme cases, a doctor may prescribe medications, such as muscle relaxants, anti-depressants, or they may inject corticosteroids to manage the pain.
Remember that these medications are just temporary relief of neck pain. If you think that the reason behind the pain is your lifestyle, there are a lot of ways to adjust, like being cautious with your posture and practicing good exercise.
Use Hot Or Cold Compress
The use of heating pads and cold packs is a natural and handy way to treat neck and shoulder pain. Use heating pads or a hot compress if the neck pain is due to stiffness. This is because a hot compress may help loosen the muscles’ stiffness and warms up the muscles before doing an activity. The use of a cold compress is best for swelling because it may help regulate blood flow.
Meet A Physical Therapist
If any of the home remedies don’t seem to work, seek professional help. A physical therapist may help determine the cause of neck pain, as well as advise and recommend how to deal with it naturally. Since they’re the experts in physical health, they can also help you develop a treatment plan on what you can do to alleviate neck pain and how to avoid it from reoccurring.
A physical therapist will guide you on how to execute exercises and different therapeutic techniques to promote healing. In extreme cases brought about by accidents, they help administer physical therapies to deal with all kinds of physical pain.
What’s good about asking for help from a professional is that they can provide you with hands-on care to deal with the issue.
When To See A Doctor When You Have A Neck Pain
Having neck pain in the morning as soon as you wake up isn’t something to worry about because it may be due to your sleeping position. However, when you see these symptoms, don’t hesitate to consult a doctor because it could mean something else:
- The neck pain is associated with tingling, numbness, or weakness in the hand, arm, or shoulder.
- Your condition gets worse each day to the point that you find it difficult to get comfortable.
- Pain killers and other medications don’t seem to help.
- The pain is accompanied by irritability due to fever or headache.
- The pain is caused by an injury or a fall that affects your hand or arm mobility.
Your doctor may run a series of imaging tests, such as x-rays, CT-scan, and MRIs, to know accurately the underlying condition that causes the pain. They may prescribe medications or therapy based on the results of the examinations.
What Can Be Done To Avoid Neck Pain?
Usually, neck pain has something to do with poor posture or age-related wear and tear. That’s why it’s important to have precautionary measures to help avoid it.
Consider trying these helpful pieces of advice to prevent neck pain:
- Use Good Posture. Whether you’re sitting or standing, make sure that your position is where the least strain is placed on your muscles.
- Take Frequent Breaks. If your work involves sitting in front of a computer, avoid sitting for straight hours. Experts advised to move your neck and shoulders once in a while, and you need to get up every hour to have a body stretch.
- Avoid Carrying Heavy Loads. Neck pain is usually due to putting much strain over the shoulders. If you’re constantly carrying heavy loads, make sure that the left and right side of your body carries the same weight.
Additionally, it’s preferred to use a backpack instead of a shoulder bag. If you’re using a shoulder bag, alternate it with your left and right shoulders.
- Sleep In A Good Position. Different sleeping positions can place unnecessary strain on the different parts of the body. To avoid waking up in the morning with neck, back, hips, or back pain, make sure that you’re practicing a sleeping position where the spine’s natural curve is still maintained.
- Try Out Relaxation Techniques. It’s believed that stress is a major contributor to bodily aches. Fortunately, different relaxation techniques can help you ease muscle tension.
You don’t have to allot a big chunk of time just to have some relaxation in a day. For instance, you may practice breathing exercises for a couple of minutes or you may consider aromatherapy in your workplace, helping you relaxed as you work.
Neck pain is a common problem that’s usually a result of bad posture, injury, stress, and a lot more. It may not always be regarded as a symptom of a certain condition, but it’s important not to ignore it. That’s why you should know when to call for professional help to know the underlying conditions caused by it.
If you wake up experiencing neck pain, you may take over-the-counter medications, use a hot or cold compress, do therapeutic exercises, or you may visit your physical therapist to help you deal with the pain.