8 Home Remedies for Neck and Shoulder Pain
Neck and shoulder pain are experienced by both men and women of all ages. This discomfort usually begins with minor symptoms, such as a slight stiffness when you move your neck. The conditions can worsen over time. You might feel a burning pain in your neck and shoulder blade, which even radiates down the arm.
The causes of neck and shoulder pain include poor posture, bad sleeping positions, or previous injuries. The chronic pain may also be aggravated by working at a desk for too long or jerking your neck in exercises. Most neck and shoulder aches are typically mild. The symptoms will often go away on their own, and the recovery process is calibrated through regular physiotherapy sessions.
There are also numerous home remedies for neck and shoulder pain. Check out these eight best remedies for neck and shoulder pain relief:
Home Remedy #1: Rest
Rest is one of the best remedies for neck and shoulder pain. If you’re dealing with a mild stiffness, take it easy and avoid physically strenuous activities for a while. Working through the pain can only aggravate the injury and make your symptoms worse.
During your resting period, you may want to take a few days away from sports and intense exercising. This gives the neck and shoulder enough time to heal. When you do resume these activities, be cautious and remember not to overexert yourself.
Home Remedy #2: Neck pillows
In addition to rest, getting a comfortable night of sleep is important for the recovery process. Your pain may be caused by a poor sleeping position, which puts undue pressure on the neck and shoulder area. Sleeping on your stomach is the worst position. Instead, sleeping on your back tends to put less strain on the neck and shoulders.
If you sleep on your side, you may use a special neck pillow to align your head, neck, and spine. This type of pillow helps to reduce the amount of pain you’re feeling right now. Plus, it will have therapeutic effects on your body in the long term. For chronic neck and shoulder pain, you should invest in a firmer mattress and seek the advice of a chiropractor.
Home Remedy #3: Stretches
While you’re taking a few days off from aggressive workouts, it’s a good idea to continue light stretches for your neck and shoulder. Some gentle exercises can help to ease the symptoms more quickly.
For shoulder pain, try rolling your shoulders back and forth. Then, squeeze your shoulder blades together. For neck pain, move your ear slowly from one shoulder to the other. Follow up on this exercise by turning your head from side to side.
When you are performing stretches for neck and shoulder pain, beware of your movements. Make sure you avoid jerky, sudden motions that can aggravate your pain. Move slowly and cautiously in your exercises.
Home Remedy #4: Massages
If your muscles are stiff and sore, a gentle massage can loosen them up and ease the pressure. Either massage the area yourself, ask a spouse or family member for help, or get professional massage therapy.
In addition to massages, you may find pain relief by applying ice and heat onto your neck or shoulder. For the first few days of your injury, reduce inflammation with an ice pad to the affected area. For the next couple of days, apply heat using a hot compress. You can also alternate between the ice and heat treatments several times a day.
Home Remedy #5: Good posture
Improving your sitting posture helps to relieve neck and shoulder pain. Poor posture creates extra pressure in your neck and shoulders, which can lead to chronic pain over time. Whether you’re sitting, walking, or standing, try to correct your posture as often as possible. When your head, neck, and spine are in proper alignment, you’ll prevent and reduce pain.
Home Remedy #6: Ergonomic workspaces
One of the common causes for neck pain is connected to an uncomfortable workspace. If you sit at a poorly optimized computer desk for eight hours each day, it will contribute to your aches and pains. Create an ergonomic workspace to relieve your symptoms and prevent the pain from persisting in the long term.
For ergonomic workspaces, start by making sure your chair is in a comfortable position. Ideally, your feet should be able to lay flat on the floor. Also, adjust your computer to eye level, so that you won’t have to crane your neck.
Home Remedy #7: Mouth guards
Grinding or clenching your teeth at night may be the root cause of your neck and shoulder pain. This constant pressure on the jaw radiates down to the neck and surrounding areas. Over time, this will cause tight and painful muscles. By wearing a mouth guard at night, it will help take the excessive pressure off your jaw.
Home Remedy #8: Stress relief
You might not realize it, but stress can cause you to tense your neck and shoulder muscles. Over time, this will lead to soreness and tightness that produces pain. Meditation, listening to music, or a fun hobby can help to reduce stress levels.
Another good way to relieve stress is to take a walk. You probably already know it isn’t a good idea to sit around all day. Get up, walk around, and stretch your legs. This is an especially good remedy for neck and shoulder pain caused by long hours of driving or working at a computer.