Neck pain is something that most people have dealt with at one time or another. The exact location of the pain varies from person to person, affecting any of the seven cervical vertebrae that connect the base of the skull to the thoracic spine. In addition to the bones themselves, there is also a complex system of muscles, ligaments, and soft tissue that could be the source of neck pain. The neck is also home to blood vessels, the thyroid gland, lymph nodes, and the trachea, all of which could also contribute to the pain and discomfort you are feeling. The main purpose of the neck – or cervical spine – is to support and control the movements of the head. The seven bones that make up the neck are what gives it flexibility and range of motion. In fact, the neck is the most flexible part of the spine!
The flexible and strong stature of the neck is also what makes it susceptible to pain. Have you ever woken up with a ‘crick’ in your neck from sleeping wrong? Or looked over your shoulder too quickly, only to be met with a sharp pain? In today’s technology-centric society, we are seeing more people than ever before experience neck pain. Sometimes called text neck or tech neck, neck pain caused by technology is a real thing that many people are dealing with. Dealing with neck or back pain can have a major impact on your quality of life and overall happiness. In many cases, neck and back pain go hand-in-hand.
Thankfully, there are numerous ways to get rid of neck pain, including chiropractic adjustments. We use spinal manipulations to correct misalignments of the spine, which then relieves pressure in the neck, back, and head. In addition to adjustments at our injury clinic, here are a handful of tips to help you get rid of neck pain now:
- Stretch it out – One of the best things you can do to get rid of neck and back pain is stretch first thing in the morning. You can even do some exercises right from your bed, which will help you go about your day free of pain.
- Get off your phone – We mentioned text neck, but it is worth talking about in more detail. When we look at our phones, in most cases the chin rests on the chest and the neck curves into a C-shape. This is extremely bad for your neck, as your head weighs about 12-15 pounds. The further the head is away from your shoulders looking down at your phone, the more strain it puts on all those muscles and ligaments.
- Don’t sleep on your stomach – If you are a stomach sleeper, it’s time to stop. This is actually the worst position you can sleep in, as you have to turn your head either to the left or right, which creates unnecessary neck strain. A better option is to sleep on your back with pillows under your knees or on your side with a pillow in between your knees.
- Avoid crossing your legs – This may be the toughest one, but if you sit at a desk all day, the last thing you should be doing is crossing your legs. If possible, keep your feet planted on the ground and your legs parallel to one another.
It is estimated that about 10% of the population is suffering from a stiff neck at any given time. To avoid being diagnosed with osteoarthritis of the spine (50% of people over 50 have this form of arthritis), take the above tips into consideration. If you would like to learn more about how chiropractic care can help with neck pain, please contact Premier Injury Clinics of DFW today.