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Neck Pain: Three Ways to Relieve a Pain in the Neck

by Michelle Evans

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Like back pain, neck pain can be an unwanted showstopper during the course of a work day. Unfortunately, your neck is responsible for supporting the weight of your head and many of spend many hours of the day abusing our neck through hyper extension, extended periods of time in which we keep it turned in a single direction or in some instances, excessive jarring motions that result from intense, physical activity. 
Its no wonder that so many of us wake up with tightness and discomfort in our neck, shoulders, and regional muscles. Our repetitive actions that cause strain and pain to this part of our body can have a detrimental impact on how well we are able to do the simple things ranging from getting out of the bed to taking a shower to simply sitting at a desk for six or seven hours.  

The great news here is that a pain in the neck is often manageable.  Here are three things you can do to relieve your neck pain. 

 

Image Source: Shutterstock/Colour59

Invest in a Good Sleep Pillow to Prevent Neck Pain

 

SensorPedic SensorGel Luxury Gusseted Memory Foam Bed Pillow, iCool Technology System

How often do you replace your pillow? How often should you replace your pillow? Experts recommend replacing your pillow every 18 to 36 months. Keep in mind that this really only applies to the "good" ones. If you have a substandard pillow, then you should replace it more frequently or you risk suffering neck pain.


The best investment you can make towards relieving your neck pain is to invest in a good pillow for your best. We often fail to take care of our own health and wellness, taking the cheaper route out on things such as a good pillow.  It may seem crazy to spend $100 on a bed pillow, but if the pillow lasts for three years, its probably more cost effective than having to purchase a pillow every three to six months.

Perform Neck Exercises for Neck Pain

Anytime you find yourself sitting behind a desk for more than two hours, you should try to implement some form of desk fitness. Perform neck exercises periodically during the neck day to relieve the tension that is building up in your neck. It is not uncommon for tension to build in one's neck after a period of time during the day. Work stresses can be a contributor to unwanted tension. After several hours, the tension simply increases to form a horrific knot that causes your shoulders to rise and your neck to hurt. 

It is critical that you remember to take advantage of intermittent breaks in which you exercise your neck. Try stretching your neck muscles by first moving your neck from side to side then up and down.
Get an Ergonomics Evaluation for Neck Pain

Do you sit all day in the office? Ask your employer about an ergonomics evaluation. Believe it or not, the way you sit and the way you stare at the monitor all day can contribute to neck pain. an ergonomic evaluation can help reveal if you have the necessary equipment (i.e. office chair, foot stool, document holder) to do your job effectively without causing injury to your self. 

There are other steps you can take to relieve neck pain including boosting your water intake, which is known to increase the amount of water in the body, thus reducing the risk for damage to your vertebral discs.  Warm compresses and warm showers can also help to relax tense muscles. 


Of course, if you are unable to relieve your neck pain despite your best efforts, you should consult with your physician.