The neck is a body part that you rarely think about…until it hurts. Neck pain is incredibly common among people of all ages, who work different kinds of jobs, and who pursue different lifestyles. The purpose of this article is to discuss some of the most common causes of neck pain and a few natural strategies for treating pain in the neck.
Sleeping in a Bad Position
One of the most common causes of a stiff neck is sleeping in the wrong position, which is sometimes referred to as a crick in the neck. This occurs when you fall asleep in an awkward way that puts excess pressure on the neck.
Hunching over a computer all day or slouching when you sit down could also be a cause of neck pain. When you sit with your head tilted forward for extended periods of time, it makes the neck muscles work harder and become stiff. For example, all those hours you spend staring down at your smartphone screen could be making your neck sore.
One of the more sudden and obvious causes of neck pain is a sports injury in which the neck is jarred or stretched unnaturally. This is common in contact sports that involve body-to-body collisions and causes the nerves in the neck to be impacted.
However, you don’t need to experience an acute incident to feel neck pain. Repetitive motion tasks also commonly cause neck pain. Dancers and swimmers often complain of neck pain after long practice sessions that require them to move their heads back and forth continuously.
Anyone who’s been in a car accident can probably describe to you what whiplash feels like. This condition occurs when the neck and head are suddenly thrust forward or backward with great force. Whiplash can cause tears or ruptures in the cervical spine.
Degenerative Disc Disease
One of the more severe causes of neck pain is degenerative disc disease of the cervical spine. The spine puts up with a lot of wear and tear over the years, but if the disc degenerates too much, pinched nerves and chronic neck pain can result.
Osteoarthritis can affect any part of the body, including the neck. The joint condition in this region is called cervical osteoarthritis, which is a joint mobility issue that makes bone grind upon bone. It can also make the joints of the neck become inflamed, grow bone spurs, and pinch nerves.
One of the simplest explanations for neck pain is stress, but that doesn’t make it any easier to avoid. When you are stressed out and feeling anxious, the neck muscles naturally tighten up in response. Depression can also cause the neck to feel stiff and sore.
Infections can occur in many places throughout the body, and the cervical spine is not immune to them. For example, meningitis is a very serious condition that involves an infection of the cervical spine, and one of the early warning signs is neck pain.
Certain conditions, like fibromyalgia, can be difficult to diagnose. However, fibromyalgia can affect muscles, ligaments, and tendons all throughout the body. The neck is often one of those affected body parts.
Natural Solutions for Neck Pain
Of course, the best way to ease neck pain is to get to the source of what’s causing it and then treat it. However, there are some general remedies that may help reduce different kinds of neck pain. These include ice packs, warm water therapy in a shower, Epsom salt baths, and massage with lavender oil. Acupuncture, getting a more supportive pillow, yoga, and stretching may also help. Other neck pain sufferers swear by chiropractic care, organic sulfur, the boswellia herb, and eating more magnesium-rich foods like almonds, broccoli, and bananas.