5 Things to stop doing when you have Neck Pain

The goal of this guide is to give you the 20/80 of things to avoid if you have neck pain. Hopefully, after this article you will decrease your pain and improve your neck range of motion (ROM) and mobility, and ultimately return to normal activities.

10s summary of article 

  • Too many pillows
  • Texting and Texting and Texting
  • Not Moving
  • Slouching 

1)Too Many Pillows
Never imagined comfort could do so much harm. If you are sleeping with more than one pillow, stop. Your neck is comprised of multiple bones that form a forward curve called a lordosis. When you sleep with multiple pillows, you are flexing your head forward while sleeping, and this can cause you to lose your cervical lordosis and increase the stress on your neck, joints, and muscles. Learn to sleep with one pillow and use a cervical roll to help support your neck's natural forward curve while your sleep. If you are like me and love to have many pillows, a deep tissue massager targeted at your neck may help ease the pain, however it is highly recommended to seek long term solutions.

2)Texting and Texting and Texting
A modern day issue that arises from smart phones is that many people have neck issues. Next time you take the train, take a look at your surroundings and you will notice 90% of people with their neck tilted downwards. When texting and looking down at your phone for hours on end, you are placing your neck in an extreme position of forward flexion, and this can lead to text neck, a relatively new condition of neck pain caused by excessive smartphone and tablet use. 

3)Not Moving
Work 9-5 at your office without any movement? You’re most likely putting your neck at risk. Exercise is one of your main tools in keeping your neck moving normally and keeping the pain away. General exercise can help you keep neck pain at a minimum, and specific neck exercises and postural strengthening exercises can ensure that you rapidly resolve your neck pain and keep it from coming back. A quick tip would be to work for 45mins, and walk around for 15mins at work. Or better yet, get a standing desk!

Poor posture while sitting or standing is one of the major causes of neck pain. If you develop pain in your neck, have your physical therapist check your posture. He or she can offer ideas to help you consistently change your posture and can teach you the proper way to sit to keep your neck in the best position possible. 


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