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10 Home Remedies to Relieve a Stiff Neck

stiff neck

It is not too difficult to predict why the number of people who suffer/suffered from neck pain has been increasing steadily since the early 2000s. With the advent of certain electronic devices such as computers, smartphones or tablets, neck problems like stiffness have become more common among people, as suggested in the article.

Even though the use of the mentioned devices is not the mere cause of neck stiffness, they are indeed one of the chief causes of the stiff neck. On the other hand, the role of these electronic devices in our daily and business life is unquestionable.

There are certainly other reasons that can cause a stiff neck such as stress-anxiety, injuries, sleeping in the wrong position, and repetitive neck motion, to name but a few.

Dr Andrew Bang from Cleveland Clinic said ” a stiff neck is the result of muscles weakening over time from poor posture or misuse.

As the number of people with stiff necks – which can hinder daily activities – increase throughout the world, we have compiled the 10 best home remedies that can relieve pain from the neck and provide some comfort.

Below given methods can either prevent you from getting a stiff neck or help you overcome the problem faster.


1-  Computer and Smartphone Use

You do work 8 hours your computer in front of you looking down at it. Or, just like anybody, you use your smartphone for long hours for doing your job or other things. Fair enough. However, doing these things repetitively without a break can cause health problems, one of which is a stiff neck.

Therefore, setting your computer screen anywhere between your eye level, standing up and walking back and forth for 5 minutes every hour, gently moving your neck to the sides, using headphones, taking care of your posture while sitting, and more importantly limiting your computer and smartphone use as much as possible will minimise the risk of getting neck stiffness also help you relieve your stiff neck.


2- Stretch Regularly

As we have mentioned in the previous section, stretching is an effective way to deal with neck stiffness. Due to various reasons, we do move less in a day than a person would do 40 years ago.

Therefore, we are more susceptible to muscle and skeletal problems that can happen due to a sedentary lifestyle. One of the areas in our body that are affected negatively as a result of sedentary life is the neck.

For this reason, stretching and moving your neck wherever and whenever possible will decrease the risk of having a painful neck stiffness.

Here is a video that can show you how to stretch your neck muscles with simple movements.


3-  Take Breaks While Driving

Driving for half an hour or a bit longer wouldn’t bring about a stiff neck, but, if you drive long hours gazing at the road ahead this can make the same negative effect as looking at your computer for long hours on your neck muscles.

Therefore, bringing your seat to the best position that supports your posture, and having a frequent break to stretch your body and neck will help you avoid neck pain and also will prevent the problem from getting worse.


4- Avoid Sleeping Face-down

If you suffer from a stiff neck more frequently than your peers or friends, then the culprit might be your sleeping position.

According to sleep experts; one of the biggest mistakes is sleeping on your stomach ( as seen in the picture) if you are already susceptible to a stiff neck. Because this sleep position put pressure on one side of your neck and holds your soft tissues in an unnatural position while you sleep.

The best sleep positions are sleeping on your back or on your side depending on which one you like most, says sleep experts.

The conclusion is that you should select the position carefully if you want to prevent your neck pain from getting worse and also want to reduce the risk of neck stiffness. 


5- Apply Heat or Ice

Here is a practical way to tackle a stiff neck. You have got two options. You can either apply ice or heat to the painful area to relieve the stiff neck.

Nonetheless, experts say that applying ice in the first two days of the pain is slightly more effective than applying heat.

After the ice is compressed, heat will be more effective. To apply heat to the area with pain, you can take a warm shower or directly apply hot compresses and a heating pad.


6-  Avoid Sudden Movements

Earlier in the article, we have said that gently stretching neck muscles can reduce the pain. Moreover, we added an informative video in which a chiropractor illustrates the most appropriate neck stretching movements.

While keeping the neck muscles stretched is necessary for both preventing and treating a stiff neck, doing sudden movements can worsen the situation, according to experts.

Move your neck periodically but avoid sudden and harsh movements such as shaking your head or lifting heavy materials in the time of neck pain.


7- Reduce Stress

Remaining stress-free in this modern world is a big deal. But in the meantime, we should be aware of the consequences of experiencing too much stress and anxiety. 

Experts warn us: that unmanaged stress or anxiety causes many physical symptoms, one of which is neck pain.

Therefore, reducing and managing your stress will make a difference in treating and preventing neck stiffness.


8- Get a Massage

Doing hand massage to the soft tissue and tendons in the painful area of the neck can increase blood circulation and reduce muscle tension. Relaxed muscles along with good blood circulation in the area of pain will help you overcome the problem, according to experts from Spine Health.

Getting massaged, especially by a trained and qualified massage therapist, is an effective way to relieve neck stiffness. But, if it is too luxurious for you, you can delegate one of your loved ones such as your partner, sister or friend to give a gentle massage to the painful area of your neck.


9- Sleep on A Firm Mattress

When it comes to neck stiffness, even your mattress choice can be the culprit.

Experts recommend sleeping on a firm mattress without a pillow if you have neck pain. Alternatively, you can sleep with a pillow designed specifically to support the neck to minimise neck problems.


10 – Take Over the Counter Medicine

According to Cleveland Clinic; it is safe to use some over-the-counter pain relievers like; ibuprofen or acetaminophen to reduce neck pain.


Note: If your pain persists for more than a few days and also the pain hinders your daily activities, visit your doctor.