With the prevalence of technology use today, one of the most common causes of neck pain is poor posture. Sitting in a chair all day with the shoulders slumped places pressure on the vertebrae of the neck and upper back, which promotes muscle tension.
15% of adults in the United States have neck pain that lasts for 24 hours.
If your neck and shoulders feel tight or are chronically painful, be sure to review our guide on how to give yourself a relaxing neck and shoulder massage.
Muscle tension can cause your neck to begin cracking and grinding as well. When the muscles are tense, they pull the vertebrae out of their natural position and this causes gas pockets to form in the joint. Popping releases the gas and moves the bones back into place.
Many forms of neck pain are short-lived and can be relieved with a tool like the best handheld back massager. Prevention is the best way to provide you with long-term relief. By identifying the cause of your neck pain, you can take action.
Here is what could be causing your neck pain.
1. Your Pillow
Sleeping in a position that doesn’t align your neck with the rest of your spine can cause pain in the morning. It may even interfere with the quality of sleep received. Use a pillow that provides support to your neck where you are feeling the most pain. For those with medical conditions that require unique sleeping positions, consider using a body pillow or other supports that will reinforce the alignment between the neck and spine.
2. An Injury
Whiplash injuries can cause tremendous levels of neck pain, but not cause symptoms at the moment of injury. It can be several days, if not weeks, for the tightness and pain of whiplash to develop. Automobile accidents are a common reason for this injury, but any quick back-and-forth movement of the head can cause it. Other traumatic injuries to the neck, shoulders, or back can cause acute neck pain as well.
3. Pinched Nerve
When muscles become tense, they tend to swell just a bit. That swelling, when it occurs in the neck, can cause a nerve to pinch. Bone spurs, disc malformations, and other physical causes can contribute to the issue as well. To find relief, the pressure being placed on the nerve will need to be removed. This usually requires medical supervision to be successful.
4. Herniated Disc
Small injuries add up over time. Poor posture strain adds up over time as well. These issues can contribute to a herniated disc in the neck. This pain is often acute and radiates outward from the injury. Surgery is usually required to correct this situation.
If you have pain that is accompanied by tingling feelings, muscle twitches, or radiating pain, then seek out medical attention immediately. These can be the signs of a serious medical condition.
Otherwise, take time to care for yourself. Focus on improving your posture. Relieve neck tension as soon as you can. This will help you feel a lot better throughout the day.