Neck pain is a common complaint among adults and teenagers as well. Most people have neck pain due to poor postures – slouching over your computer or workbench, which in turn causes muscle strain. In most cases, West Orange neck pain may go away after you take over-the-counter medicines or self-care measures such as hot or cold compresses. However, neck pain may sometimes be a symptom of an underlying medical condition such as osteoarthritis and herniated discs. Whether the pain is mild or intense, medical treatment is necessary to determine the cause of your pain and improve your condition.
How can you prevent neck pain?
Maintain proper posture
Poor posture is a common cause of neck pain as it results in straining of muscles and ligaments and puts you at risk of obtaining an injury. Avoid slumping forward as this adds extra pounds to your neck and may strain your whole spine. Here are some of the tips to help you maintain a good posture:
- Use a phone holder and raise it to eye level to avoid looking down on your mobile device when texting, which will strain your neck muscles.
- Take frequent breaks when using your phone to avoid prolonged hours of shifting your head forward.
- Avoid tucking your phone between your ear and shoulder. Instead, use hand-free devices such as a headset to avoid tilting your neck.
- Ensure your shoulders are directly over your hips when standing or sitting.
Elevate your head while sleeping
Your doctor may advise that you use a pillow to maintain the neutral alignment of your cervical spine. Using a pillow may vary from person to person when it comes to comfort and support. You may need to try out several options to determine what works best for you, the sleeping position being a significant determining factor. For example:
· Lying on the back with the head on a relatively flat pillow may relieve some people of pain. Others may use an orthopedic pillow that has extra support for the neck. Unlike a regular pillow, an orthopedic one has a more profound depression where the head lies.
- If you have an adjustable bed, you may incline the upper part of your body and use a relatively flat pillow to support your head.
- Supporting the neck using a pillow while lying on the side may be ideal for other individuals.
However, if you change sleeping positions at night, you may need an extra pillow that works for your different sleeping positions.
Exercise your neck
Stretching exercises are fantastic for your neck as they strengthen your muscles and reduce your risk for neck injuries such as whiplash. Your physical therapist may guide you through an exercise that aligns your head over the shoulders and stretches the scalene and suboccipital muscles. Warming your neck with a heating pad may help relax stiff muscles before engaging in gentle exercises with the help of your specialist.
These self-care measures may help minimize and prevent neck pain from recurring. However, if the pain persists, you should book a session with your doctor at the Pain Center of NJ for treatment to eliminate pain and improve your overall well-being.