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Stiff Neck: Curing or Preventing Neck Stiffness (Wfh Series 2)

Back, Neck & Shoulder Pain, Pain Management, Stiff Neck


15 OCT 2021



Stiff Necks: Have you ever woke up with a nagging pain in your neck? Or being unable to turn it freely because it is angled to one side? You can’t always look back without also twisting your entire body backwards!


You’re not alone; a stiff neck is a regular occurrence, especially after working at home for long periods of time.


What is a Stiff Neck?


The most common cause of a stiff neck is a strained neck muscle or a soft tissue sprain. It can also result in headaches, neck pain, and shoulder pain. In most cases, the stiffness subsides within a week. The severity of discomfort, the length of recuperation, and the likelihood of recurrence can all be affected by how one treats and maintains flexibility in their neck.


Stiff Neck: What causes Neck Stiffness?



  • Stiff neck can be caused by the following:
  • Poor sleeping posture
  • Excessive head and neck twisting due to weight-bearing
  • Lack of pillow support: if it is too high, too low or too hard (which puts the muscles in a state of long-term tension with continuous stretching). All of these can cause neck pain which results in stiffness.


In addition, getting cold on the back of the neck is also a common cause of neck stiffness. For example – consuming too many cold drinks or constantly being exposed to cold air. This will cause certain muscles at the neck and back to weaken. The meridians in the body are then affected and experience blockage, which impairs the movement of the neck. People who experience getting colds, stiff neck and pain may also experience symptoms such as slight fever, headaches and others.



How long does Neck Stiffness usually last?


Neck stiffness can improve in as little as a few days for most minor situations.


How to treat Neck Stiffness: Remedies


So the age old question – how do we cure or prevent it? Neck stretches or neck Tui Na massage therapies are very effective. Forward and backward tilts, side tilts, side rotations, and shoulder rolls are some exercises to try. When you stretch your neck muscles, you will feel some tightness. However, you should not be in any pain. If you do, immediately stop.


For serious cases of stiff neck or those looking for an instant stiff neck pain relief, acupuncture treatment can be extremely effective – sometimes with results showing instantly!


Acupuncture, combined with hot compression, as well as accurate prescription of Chinese herbs, can speed up the recovery or healing process. Even electrical, magnetic therapy, ultrasound and other physical therapies can be effective.


Remember – the most important thing is to be mindful of our posture! We should usually try to avoid bad sleeping posture and pillows should not be too high, low or too hard. If you have neck stiffness, try to keep your head in a normal position to relax the neck muscles.


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About the author


Physician 中医师

100AM Mall, Paya Lebar Square

Stephanie 张医师

Physician 中医师

Zhang Li Qun 张立群

TCM Registration No. T1603379J

English: Conversational

Chinese: Fluent

Educational Background: Singapore College of Traditional Chinese Medicine/Guangzhou University of Chinese Medicine, registered TCM Practitioner

教育背景: 毕业于新加坡中医学院/广州中医药大学,拥有新加坡执业医师资格

  • Area of Interest: Pain management, TCM internal medicine, TCM gynecology, skin disease, facial paralysis, slimming acupuncture.
  • Physician Stephanie has great insight in using needles on treating patients who suffer various pain such as an acute or chronic lumbar sprain, slipped (herniated) disk, neck and shoulder pain, arthritis of the knee, etc. She also gathered much experience in achieving good results by combining treatment between acupuncture and medicine for GIT disease such as bloating, stomach ache, constipation, diarrhea, neurosis and sequel of stroke, facial paralysis, eczema menopause syndrome. In 2021, she was featured in The Smart Local to demonstrate the impressive capabilities of our Lift and Glow facial acupuncture that is akin to Botox and Fillers to re-shape faces.

  • 擅长:各种痛症,内科,妇科,皮肤病,面瘫,针灸美容美体塑形
  • 擅长以独特的针灸手法治疗各种疼痛病,包括急慢性腰扭伤,椎间盘突出,颈椎病颈肩疼痛,膝关节炎症等等,具有用针少见效快的特点。对于胃肠道疾病如胃胀胃痛,便秘泄泻以及神经官能症的调理,中风后遗症,面瘫,湿疹以及更年期综合症的调理治疗,在以针灸配合中药方面也颇有心得体会,取得不错的疗效。