How to Prevent Neck Pain

There are a number of things you can do to prevent neck pain without ever stepping foot in a doctor’s office. Apply these tips to prevent the common causes of neck pain:

#1 Change Your Sleeping Position

If you often wake up with a stiff neck, you likely have to change your sleeping positions or get a new pillow. Sleeping on your stomach is the worst thing for your neck, because your head is turned to one side for hours. Imagine walking around for 8 hours with your head turned to one side? You’d probably have a stiff neck too! So, it’s no surprise that when you sleep on your stomach for hours, you wake up with neck pain and can further develop sleep problems.

#2 Take Breaks Often at Work

If you spend long hours driving or sitting at a desk at work, take regular breaks (every 45-60 minutes). Get up, walk around, and stretch a little. Movement is life, so make sure you don’t get stuck in one position for too long- this can lead to facet syndrome later on in life. When you take breaks often, it keeps your neck muscles from staying in a fixed position during all of that screen time.

#3 Quit Smoking

Smoking can damage the discs between your vertebrae and lead to premature onset of arthritis in your neck. This is a tough habit to break. So true commitment will be required of you, because we don’t recommend the smoking cessation medications that are often prescribed.

#4 Get a Better Purse or Bag

Regularly carrying a heavy bag over one shoulder can result in neck and shoulder pain. Consider switching to a backpack or another type of bag that allows you to distribute the weight evenly such as a messenger bag. Take anything that is non-essential out of your purse or bag. Your spine will thank you for it.

#5 Develop a Stress Management Routine

Good stress management techniques help you reduce the amount of stress that ends up trapped in your neck and shoulders. A quick 10 minute meditation is a great way to reduce stress, as well as a short walk around the block.

The Symptoms of Neck Pain

Neck pain can involve tightness and spasms in the muscles of your neck. It can also result in decreased range of motion making it difficult to look over your shoulder or look up or down. Neck pain can worsen when you hold your head in one position, such as looking at a computer monitor for a long period of time or sleeping on your stomach. Tension builds up over time and can become chronic neck pain.

Apply these tips! If you still need help for your neck pain, give us a call for a free consultation at (619) 313-5403.

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