Neck Pain Causes, Symptoms & Prevention Tips
Neck pain due to a whiplash injury or poor posture?
Chronic neck pain can have a serious impact on your quality of life. If neck pain has compromised your quality of life, chiropractic care from Friedman Chiropractic Center can help. Our chiropractors will manage your pain naturally, without the need for medication or surgery.
Car accidents can cause whiplash in as little as a 5 mph impact, abruptly whipping the cervical spine back and forth, straining the neck muscles and tendons, causing a cervical spine misalignment. Once the neck is out of alignment, patients are at risk for additional health problems as well. Whiplash injuries can lead to a lifetime of neck pain and chronic headaches.
Poor posture is a leading cause for pain. It triggers stiffness and soreness in both the shoulders and neck. For example, leaning forward while typing on the computer rounds the upper back and strains the shoulders. This places pressure on the lower cervical vertebra and irritates the ligaments and soft tissues. Poor posture while driving, watching TV, or even sleeping further aggravates the pain.
Restoring proper alignment to the cervical spine
will help minimize pain.
Simple changes may help to reduce strain on the neck
-Try a new pillow
It is best to use a pillow that keeps the natural curve of your neck supported and maintained. Some people find that their neck pain decreases when they lie down on their back with the head supported by a relatively flat pillow.
-Sleep on your back
Sleeping on your back is the best position to let your entire spine rest comfortably.
If you prefer to sleep on your side, make sure your pillow is not too high—usually around 4 to 6 inches thick. This height should typically prevent your head and neck from turning or bending unnaturally to either side.
-Make sure your computer is at eye level
Sit comfortably in front of your computer and close your eyes. When you open them, your gaze should be directly in the middle of your computer screen. If you have to look down, you need to prop up your monitor so that it is higher.
-Avoid neck strain from texting
Texting or looking down at your cell phone or mobile device for any length of time puts excessive strain on your neck. Make sure to hold your phone at eye level when you are using it to help avoid this stress.
-Use a headset
If you spend a lot of time on the phone, try using a bluetooth headset to reduce the strain on your neck.
-Exercise and stretch your neck
Keep your neck muscles strong by doing short sets of strengthening and stretching exercises throughout the day. One of the simplest exercises to do is the chin tuck exercise; this exercise helps strengthen the muscles that pull the head into alignment over the shoulders. It also stretches the scalene and sub-occipital muscles.
-Carry weight evenly
A common mistake people make is carrying a heavy purse or briefcase on one side of their body. This uneven load can cause your shoulders to become uneven, straining your neck muscles. Lighten your load by taking only your essentials in your purse or briefcase, and make an effort to keep your shoulders level at all times when you carry it. Consider using a backpack that distributes weight evenly across both of your shoulders.
-Relieve trigger-point pain
Irritation to the facet joints of the lower cervical vertabrea in your neck can result in muscle trigger point pains. Trigger points are small knots in the muscle or fascia—which is a layer of tissue under your skin and around the muscle—that can lead to pain.
Poor sleeping positions and an old, worn-out mattress
Stress and muscle tension
Tightness in shoulders
Soreness and difficulty moving your neck or turning your head
Neck, shoulder and/or upper arm pain
Maintain a strong and balanced posture
Support your lower back when sitting
Take short breaks from sitting to stretch
Use a pillow that keeps your neck straight when sleeping
Warm up before working out
Practice relaxation exercises
Our goal at
Friedman Chiropractic Center
is to treat the root cause of your pain and eliminate the problem!