Bid Adieu to Neck Pain

July 23, 2018

Neck pain is a common health problem, experienced by a wide age- group ranging from young adults to the elderly. Neck pain is more common among students and people with desk jobs. Modern lifestyle dependency on the excessive use of devices like phones and computers also contributes to the rise of neck pain in the masses.

Neck Pain

To curb this common health difficulty from becoming a chronic issue, we must first understand the working and functions of our neck.

Learning about our Neck
Our neck accomplishes the difficult task of supporting our head. Our neck muscles move, stabilize, feel stress, and have the burden of gravity by holding up our head. The back of our neck includes the cervical spine and the muscles and ligaments that surround and support it.

Causes of Neck Pain

Most of the time neck pain is due to bad posture, overuse or injury. Here are a few buzzwords which are related to neck pain and its causes:

  • TEXT NECK/ TECH NECK:
  • We spend hours poring over a computer or laptop screen, using iPads or smartphones, slouching our shoulders and hunching forwards. Typing and texting are activities that lead to stress in the neck and shoulder region to counteract gravity and cause postural disbalance. Also called Forward Head Posture (FHP), this problem may include numbness in the arms and a burning pain between the shoulder blades.
     

  • SITTING IS THE NEW SMOKING:
  • Our modern sedentary lifestyle is harming our bodies in ways we don’t even realize. Hours of physical inactivity such as getting stuck in traffic, long office hours, binge-watching television or playing video games harms our body in a variety of ways causing neck pain.
     

  • WHIPLASH:
  • Sometimes sharp pain is caused by injury to the neck due to sudden jerking movement called whiplash. It is very painful and strains our neck when sudden force stretches and tears the tendons in our neck.

Effective Remedies for Neck Pain

  • MAINTAIN GOOD POSTURE
  • There are things one can do such as set regular alarm during the day to alert every hour, so we can roll the shoulders around and take stock of our posture. We can instill better habits like sitting ‘taller’, walking often, pushing our chin back. We should also avoid using phones and computers for long stretches of time.
     

  • PHYSIOTHERAPY
  • To reduce pain, restore movement and function, one can try massages targeting areas from the base of the skull, shoulder blades, down to all back and hip areas if necessary. A physiotherapist may recommend traction, heat, cold, manipulation, etc. Acupuncture is also a widely accepted method to reduce chronic neck pain. Doctors also prescribe mild painkillers to tackle neck pain along with gentle exercises.
     

  • OTHER METHODS
  • With professional consultation, a change in diet such as increasing magnesium intake along with drinking loads of water is a sure shot way to prevent neck pain. Using a firm and supporting pillow or a water pillow can also relieve a stiff neck. Swimming has a therapeutic effect on our neck by reducing stiffness and inflammation.

    Taking care of our neck is of utmost importance to ward off an enormous source of suffering. Constant or recurring pain in the neck is not only detrimental to our physical well-being, but it is also our mental and emotional peace. A good posture, balanced diet, and regular medical check-ups are all it takes to curb neck pain!
    Be extra careful towards your neck starting from today.

    Content Reviewed by – Asian Hospital Medical Editors