Do you ever wonder what causes your neck pain? One day you are fine, the next day your neck feels stiff or achy and you cannot even turn your head. You may think that you are just going about your daily business – but are you- Lets’ look at some activities and postures that can cause neck pain and neck stiffness and discomfort:
- Sleeping on the Couch- You come home from a late night party, or you are watching the TV trying to fall asleep. Next thing you know you are on the couch, on your side with your head tilted. A definite cause for neck stiffness the next day ! Sleeping on the couch can put your head and neck into a position that stretches the neck muscles abnormally and creates stiffness. Falling asleep in an awkward position is a definite cause for neck pain.
- Working on the Computer for Long Periods- Many people’s job require them to on the computer all day. Often times we are so concentrated on the computer screen we don’t realize that we are tensing our shoulders and neck creating muscle spasms and tiredness by the end of the day. It is easy to engage your shoulder and neck muscles while using the computer. Often times, computer users have pain pain that also radiate down to the shoulder or between the shoulder blades.
- Blow Drying your Hair- A great cause for neck pain for ladies with long hair- unfortunately I am guilty of this one too! Blow drying your hair- bringing your head forward, back ward and to the side can cause aggravation to the neck muscles. The forward head posture creates tension in the neck muscles and ligaments.
- Driving- I have driven in cities like Hartford Connecticut or Mississauga Ontario where I am constantly tense while driving. Crazy drivers are tail gating you, people are not using their turn signals, others are talking on their cell phones- creating more tension for you. Before you know it, you have a headache, tightness in the neck and stiffness in the upper shoulders. Some people drive with their seat pulled up to the windshield (like my mother) and create even more stress on their bodies.
Being in a car accident can also lead to whiplash type injuries which can create acute and chronic neck pain. Whiplash occurs when the soft tissues in the neck are injured by a sudden jerking or "whipping" of the head (into flexion and extension). This type of motion strains the muscles and ligaments of the neck beyond their normal range of motion.
- Talking on the telephone while doing other activities at the same time - here’s a favorite pastime of people at work, stay at home mom’s and dad’s, students who should be studying. With the advent of the cell phone, practically everyone has one, even grade fivers! Talking on the phone keeps our head in one position for an extended period of time, creating tension in the neck and upper back area. Not to mention a major headache for you (and for those around you sometimes).
As you can see many different postures that can cause neck pain- Especially when we are in these postures for an extended period of time. Stress and emotional tension can cause muscles to tighten and contract, resulting in pain and stiffness. Simply sleeping wrong can cause a crick in the neck. If you sit at your desk for too long, staring at your computer, you can give yourself a stiff neck. Sprains and Strains of the neck can even be caused by healthy, normal activities. For example, tending to your garden, playing, playing a friendly game of bocce ball, even practicing your golf swing at the driving range can potentially hurt your neck. Send us your comments to the Neck Pain Support Blog- we want to hear what causes your neck pain- what postures strain your neck muscles and cause you to say " OH MY NECK?... - NJ
Additional Reading Resources:
- More Causes of Neck Pain
- Remedies for A Stiff Neck
- How to End Neck Pain Naturally By Doing a Cervical Traction Program
- The Top 10 Reasons for Neck Pain and How to Correct Them
- Decreasing Tension in the Neck and Upper Back