6 Ways to Relieve Nettlesome Neck Pain
Relieve your neck pain with the right exercise, massage and relaxation techniques. Although neck pain can be a difficult thing to live with, these home remedies can help you feel great again.
Heat and Ice
Neck pain is often caused by simple muscle strains, so treating it like any other injury can help. In the first 48 hours or so, try applying ice packs to the part of your neck that hurts. Use a cloth barrier and give your skin frequent breaks to prevent damage from the cold.
For chronic pain or injuries, try applying heat in the same way. Heat helps encourage circulation, which speeds healing. It also relaxes the muscles, which can relieve spasms and reduce pain.
Many types of neck pain include muscle spasms tied to a specific trigger point. Gently massaging that point can effectively relax the surrounding muscles and reduce your pain. At the same time, the relaxed muscles are in a better position to heal. You can massage your own neck or go to a professional massage therapist for a more in-depth procedure.
Work It Out
Although your first reaction to the pain may be to rest, this can make the problem worse for several types of neck pain. Staying active increases blood flow and keeps your muscles loose and flexible. Neck pain often responds to stretches that target the neck's full range of motion. Physical therapy can often help with more severe or chronic pain.
Pay Attention to Posture
Most people hunch forward when working on computers, watching television or driving. Pay close attention to your posture throughout the day, and try to focus on keeping your shoulders back and your neck straight. If you work on a computer, make sure your desk is set up for ergonomic health, such as having your monitor at eye level. If you have to work in less-than-ideal conditions, change your position frequently and give yourself breaks to stretch your neck.
Strengthen Your Core
Strengthening your core helps improve your posture, and it also helps prevent injury from improper lifting or carrying. The workouts you need to do to strengthen your core also often help your neck. Try to develop workout routines that include a lot of arm movement, such as swimming. Yoga is also an excellent choice for both core strength and pain relief.
Stress is tied to neck pain, so try to reduce the amount you experience. Get plenty of sleep at night, and take time out of your busy day to enjoy yourself. Meditation has also been shown to help reduce neck and back pain, and just a few minutes a day can make a difference.
Neck pain is usually not a serious condition, but it is unpleasant. It can make it hard to go about your everyday activities and make you feel drained and tired. Although you should see your doctor for more serious neck pain, minor pain can usually be relieved at home using these easy remedies.