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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