5 stretches that will relieve neck pain and tension
Mar 31, · Use a foam roller to help massage your neck muscles. You can also use a foam roller to massage out your trigger points and release any neck tension. Foam rollers can be found at most exercise supply stores. Look for a full length, six inch diameter foam roll. Place the foam roll on the ground or on an exercise ctcwd.com: K. But as with any other part of your body, exercises and stretches can make the muscles in your neck stronger and more limber. Try these moves to loosen a tense neck, banish pain, and gain flexibility.
Home » Common Conditions. A stiff neck is a common problem. It often occurs due to sleeping in an awkward position, sitting in front of a computer for a prolonged period, or straining a muscle due to bad posture or carrying heavy loads that put too much pressure on the shoulders.
Other causes include anxiety and stress that create tension in the neck muscles, trauma or injury that affects the neck, and some diseases like rheumatoid arthritis, meningitis or cancer. The main symptoms are soreness, pain and difficulty moving the neck, especially when trying to turn the head to the side. At times, a stiff neck may cause a headache, shoulder pain or arm pain.
A stiff neck does not usually indicate a serious medical problem, but it can hinder your daily activities and make it hard to sleep. Lack of sleep can make things worse. This problem usually gets better after a few days or a week. However, you can use some simple lifestyle changes and home remedies to ease the pain and stiffness. If your condition does not get better within a week or if it occurs with a high fever, consult your how to release tight neck muscles immediately.
Massage is a good option to treat a stiff neck. A gentle massage will help relax the muscles while increasing blood circulation. How to decorate an office desk in turn will help reduce the stiffness. Moreover, it will help you sleep better. If you cannot do the massage on your own due to the stiffness, get help from a friend or a professional massage therapist.
To prevent a stiff neck, go swimming on a regular basis. It improves the overall strength of the neck and back. However, make sure that you follow the proper swimming techniques and do not overdo your workout. Soothe a stiff neck with a cold compress. The cold temperature will help numb pain and limit the buildup of lactic acid, a normal by product of muscle metabolism which can cause soreness.
If you do not get relief after 48 hours of using the cold compress, try heat therapy. Heat will increase the blood flow, which in turn will decrease stiffness. It helps regulate the activity of various enzymes in the body and improves circulation. This in turn reduces muscle tension and stress. Peppermint oil has menthol that helps soothe stiff muscles in the neck. Moreover, its analgesic property will help reduce pain and discomfort.
Note: Peppermint oil is not suitable for children or those who have sensitive skin. Apple cider vinegar contains antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that help treat a stiff neck. Moreover, it can help prevent muscle strain and pain related to nutrient deficiencies. Cayenne pepper is another effective remedy to get rid of a stiff neck.
It contains capsaicin that has analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties, which help reduce pain and inflammation. The anti-inflammatory property of turmeric can help relieve discomfort caused by a stiff neck. It also helps improve blood circulation.
Note: Turmeric may not be suitable for those suffering from gallstones or a bile duct obstruction. Acupressure is a traditional Chinese treatment that can help get rid of a stiff neck, especially when how to calculate gpf interest is caused by bad posture. Here, a therapist applies pressure to specific points to how to make a gymnastics bar for home pain.
Luo Zhen is the name of the acupressure point found on the back of the hand that can help treat a stiff neck. The point is located in the depression between the two bones near the knuckles of the middle and pointer fingers. If your neck is stiff on the right side, then massage the point on your left hand, and vice versa. Massage this point by applying light pressure into it with your fingertip. Maintain the pressure for a couple of minutes. In the meantime, exercise your neck by rotating your head side to side.
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Keep reading for an expert’s tips on how to relieve neck tension, once and for all
Dec 30, · Common Causes of A Stiff Neck and Tight Shoulders. A stiff neck is often caused by weak neck muscles, and is characterized by soreness and difficulty moving the neck, especially when trying to turn the head to the side. Causes of a stiff neck include: – Excessive stress – Poor posture – Repeatedly turning the head from side to side. Your trapezius muscle consists of three parts and has many different functions—lifting your shoulders, holding up your neck and head and moving your shoulder blade. When this muscle is tight, it affects your entire body, as your biomechanics will change. Tight traps are bound to happen. Apr 22, · Neck tension is a pretty common complaint. Muscle tension can happen anywhere, after all, including the flexible, complex areas of your neck and .
Last Updated: March 31, References Approved. Steve Horney is a Licensed Physical Therapist and the Owner of Integrated Health Sciences, a New York City-based company that provides continuing education, health care products, and manual and movement physical therapy.
Steve has over 15 years of academic and professional physical therapy training and specializes in the assessment and treatment of athletes with the goal of helping them become pain-free and less susceptible to injury.
Augustine in There are 19 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has 11 testimonials from our readers, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed , times. Neck tension and pain can develop due to stress, working at a computer all day, poor sleeping positions, poor posture, or even improper breathing mechanics.
Neck tension can often lead to tension headaches and other spine issues. You can reduce uncomfortable or painful neck tension by doing neck stretches, using massage and heat, and by adjusting your daily routine.
To reduce neck tension, try stretches like seated neck tilts, arm swings, forward folds, and shoulder shrugs to loosen up your neck muscles. You can alleviate some of the pain by applying a heating pad to the area or taking a hot shower or bath.
Sleeping on a low, firm pillow, staying hydrated, and exercising for minutes each week can help you prevent future neck tension! For tips on how to perform various neck stretches, read on! Did this summary help you? Yes No. Log in Social login does not work in incognito and private browsers.
When you sit in front of a monitor all day, the bottom half of your neck ends up flexed, but the top part ends up in extension so you can see the screen.
To help relieve that, you need to have the top portion of your neck flexed forward, with the bottom part sitting over itself. Hold this stretch for two to three breaths. You should feel your neck muscles and your shoulder muscles lengthening. Inhale as you lift your head and return to the starting position. Repeat this exercise two to three times, holding for two to three breathes at a time. Combine chin tucks with neck tilts.
Start by tucking your chin in toward your chest and lifting the back of your head. Then, inhale and tilt your head to the right side. Extend and elongate your neck towards the space to your right, rather than try to bring your ear to your shoulder.
You should feel a stretch on your left shoulder and the left side of your neck. Hold this position for three breaths. As you exhale, raise your neck and look forward. Then, inhale as you tilt your head to the left side. Neck tilts are a good way to start your neck stretching routine, as they will help to lengthen the larger muscles in your neck and relax your whole body.
Lengthening and stretching the small muscles in your neck can also prevent tension headaches. You can use props like a yoga block or a pillow and sit on them to make the seated position more comfortable.
You can repeat this exercise two to three times on each side. You can also add some resistance by placing your hand against your head and gently applying pressure to your head as you tilt your head to one side. If you are tilting your head to the right side, for example, you would use your left hand to apply light pressure on the left side of your head.
Do not pull or tug on your neck and only apply light, gentle pressure on your head. Try swinging arm stretch. This simple standing stretch will get your torso and arms moving and help to release any tension in your neck and shoulders. Start to swing your arms from side to side.
Use your torso and your shoulders to turn your body gently from side to side, letting your arms also swing side to side. Swing your arms and body for six to ten breaths. You can also make your hands into fists and swing your arms so your fists land just about each hip. Repeat this for six to ten breaths. Do a forward fold with a chest opening.
This standing pose is great for releasing tension in your neck and shoulders. Turn your feet in so your toes are turned inward and your heels are turned slightly outward. Clasp your hands behind your back so your fingers intertwined and your palms are as close together as possible. Inhale as you lift your chest to the ceiling, with your neck facing upward. Exhale as you slowly bend forward between your legs, bending at your hips and not your lower back.
Let your clasped hands raise up towards the ceiling and allow gravity to slowly let them fall over your head. Hold this position for six to eight breaths. Allow your head to hang heavy and continue to clasp your hands tightly together. You should feel a stretch on your neck and shoulder muscles. All rights reserved. This image may not be used by other entities without the express written consent of wikiHow, Inc.
Use a wall to do a standing pec stretch. You can use the corner of a wall to help stretch your chest muscles and relieve any tension you are holding in this area. This will help your shoulders from rounding, which will put your neck into a better and more neutral position. Start by standing about two feet back from the corner of the wall, facing towards the corner. Keep your feet together and place equal weight in both feet.
Place your forearms on each wall, with your elbows just below the height of your shoulders. Inhale and lean in as far as you can without feeling any pain. You should feel a stretch in your chest and the front of your shoulders. Hold the stretch for about six to eight breaths.
You can repeat this stretch three to five times a day. Do cobra pose to stretch and strengthen your neck muscles.
Once you have warmed up your neck muscles with several opening stretches, you can try a cobra pose to strengthen your shoulder muscles, and your neck and upper back muscles. This pose can help improve your posture and your overall spine health. It is recommended that you stretch out tense neck muscles first before doing cobra pose.
Your arms should be at your sides, with your palms flat on the mat. Place your tongue on the roof of your mouth, as this will help to stabilize your neck muscles. Inhale and squeeze your shoulder blades together as you lift your hands and arms, letting them hover a few inches above the mat. Lift your forehead about an inch off the mat with your gaze straight ahead and down.
Hold this position for six to eight breaths, making sure your head is facing downward and you are putting weight into your legs and pressing your toes down on the mat.
Repeat this pose again two to three times. Rest between each pose with one side of your head flat on the mat. Try shoulder clocks. Shoulder shrugs work the upper shoulder and neck muscles. Sit in a chair or stand with your feet flat and shoulder width apart. Let your arms hang at your sides, then rotate your shoulders first clockwise, then counterclockwise. Repeat three to four times per day.