One of the most common types of soreness is without a doubt neck muscle pain.
I experience it sometimes, depending on the movements I do, how I sleep, the weather...but I had a car accident years ago, so I am also more exposed to it.
With neck pain we usually mean some sort of neck ache that lasts for a variable period of time, that can be days, months, and even years.
Neck pain can be triggered by a number of different causes like sedentary lifestyle, poor posture, poor sleep.
Acute neck pain is more severe and can be caused by whiplash, herniated cervical, dorsal kyphosis, lumbar lordosis etc.
Neck muscle pain is perceived as a constant pain and the symptoms can go from muscle tension and fatigue to numbness and tingling, or arm and hand weakness.
Usually it's quite easy to diagnose if you do sports (it might be caused by a common whiplash) or gym (caused by exercises performed with bad form).
But if you start experiencing neck ache and you don't have a clue of why it's happening, then you need to find the real cause with some investigation.
After that, the therapy depends on the causes, but usually it involves specific exercises for neck muscle pain, physio, pain relievers.
Worst case scenario...surgery.
Causes of Neck Muscle Pain
Our neck and that area of our spine are one of the most delicate spots of our body, and the soreness is perceived in our nerves, muscles and vertebrae of the cervical spine.
As I briefly said above, neck ache can have different causes.
Among these, the most common are:
- Sedentary lifestyle
- Poor posture
- Poor sleep (bad pillows etc.)
and they represent the generic causes of "chronic" neck pain, even though it's usually bearable and not so painful.
They cause neck muscle tension and fatigue that can last also for long periods of time.
A mattress too soft and an inadequate pillow can significantly aggravate neck pain, but also the poor posture while driving or working at the computer all day.
It's not surprising that cab drivers and truckers are highly exposed to neck soreness.
When neck pain is more acute and sharp, the causes can be others:
- Degeneration of one or more vertebral discs
- Herniated cervical
- Dorsal kyphosis
- Lumbar hyperlordosis
- Traumatic injuries
- Osteoarthritis of the cervical vertebrae
- Bad movements during weight lifting
These days, even stress can be a cause of neck muscle pain. Stress can cause contractures and muscle and joint stiffness that can affect neck and shoulder blades, causing neck ache.
The so-called stiff neck is the most common symptom of neck ache.
It is annoying and painful, and it can prevent you from being able to do the natural movements of the cervical spine.
When it involves nerves, the subject feels an unpleasant sensation of tingling and numbness, accompanied by weakness in the arm and hand.
It's obvious though that the level of pain depends on the causes, and clearly neck pain deriving from a whiplash is much more painful and sharp than chronic neck pain caused by bad sleeps.
It's time to take care of your neck and relieve neck ache, hopefully forever...do you agree?
There are three basic approaches to treat neck muscle pain:
- Relieve muscle stiffness
- Reducing the inflammation
- Correcting the posture
In the first case, you need to do specific exercises that can be recommended by a physician during physiotherapy sessions.
These exercises must be performed in the correct form (critical) and with persistence if you want to benefit from them.
In case of whiplashes or other traumas, the treatment can't be limited to exercises only.
You may need:
- Pain relief medications
- Neck brace
- Massage therapy
- Heat therapy
- Surgery (discectomy)
In my case, after a severe whiplash caused by a car accident, I had to wear a neck brace for three weeks, which made it very uncomfortable, and then I had to do massage therapy in conjunction with chiropractic to fix my neck.
I still experience neck muscle pain from times to times, and I notice that posture while working, posture while sleeping and weather can affect my neck pain quite a bit.
I use an ergonomic pillow and lumbar support for my back, and monitor stands to raise the screen at work.
All these simple improvements together made my issues much more manageable than before, try to believe.
There is also an acupressure mat with ergonomic pillow for neck pain relief that I would recommend:
I also recently purchased and backnobber after using it during my last physio sessions. I love it because it really helps releasing the tension in my upper back muscles (scapular muscle pain) by loosening the knots in my back.
Here it is available on Amazon too:
Have a nice day, and happy neck muscle pain recovery!
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