How to relieve neck pain and tension

Neck pain can be painful for many reasons. In most cases, you first need to establish what is causing the pain and muscle tension in order to choose the right pain reliever. Both medications and folk remedies help to quickly relieve neck pain.

Neck structure

The neck includes:

  • cervical spine,
  • muscles,
  • bundles,
  • larynx,
  • thyroid gland.

There are seven vertebrae in the cervical spine. Compared to the rest of the spine, the cervical vertebrae are not large. They consist, like everyone else, of a body and processes with attaching muscles and ligaments.

Between the vertebrae - discs with the outer rigid part, consisting of fibrous fibers, and the inner, soft pulpous nucleus, which provides the spine with shock absorption.

Causes of neck pain

Pain in the neck

Traumatic injury

It can be obtained while playing sports, falling head downward, in an accident or road accident. With sudden braking in the process of rapid movement in the cervical spine, a "whip symptom" occurs, as a result of which sprains of ligaments and muscles, compression fractures, displacement of cervical discs with the formation of hernias are possible.

Poor posture

Prolonged work in a monotonous position, sleeping on an uncomfortable or overly soft pillow, and prolonged static stress are predisposing factors. As a result, a stoop appears, the head begins to move forward in relation to the body, the ligaments and muscles of the neck begin to experience increased tension.

Spinal osteochondrosis

With osteochondrosis, there is a violation of the trophism of the disc with its flattening and changes in the surrounding tissues. As a result, a decrease in amortization function and the appearance of pain in the neck.

The cause of osteochondrosis can be unhealthy diet, back injuries, increased physical activity, unfavorable environment, chronic stress, inactive lifestyle, bad habits. In addition, there is a genetic predisposition.

With osteochondrosis, there is pain in the neck, shoulders, arms, dizziness and fainting. Impairment of hearing, vision, memory. "Vertebral artery syndrome" - flashing flies before the eyes, tinnitus. Impaired coordination and unsteadiness of gait.


Protrusion or herniated disc

This is the name of the protrusion of the disc from the spinal column. With a hernia, the outer annulus is destroyed with a displacement of its central part in any direction - sideways, backward or forward.

The most difficult pathology is the inward displacement of the nucleus, which can lead to the pinching of the spinal cord. With age, spinal osteochondrosis can join the hernia. All of the above factors can be the cause of a hernia, as well as carrying heavy bags, scoliosis, flat feet and age-related changes in the body.

Symptoms are similar to those of osteochondrosis, in addition to instability of blood pressure, insomnia, weakness in the hands and numbness of the fingers.

Ischemic heart disease - heart attack, angina attack

With this pathology, both irradiation pains radiating to the neck and independent pains in the neck and lower jaw are possible. As a rule, they are combined with other signs of myocardial ischemia: fear of death, shortness of breath, sweating, nausea and vomiting.

Benign or malignant growths

The growing tumor puts pressure on the nerve roots, causing neck pain and other symptoms of spinal cord compression. Benign tumors (neurinoma, hemangioma) most often have a regular rounded shape and a clear border.

Cervical pains are mild. Basically, there is discomfort from compression of tissues by a growing tumor. Malignant (lymphogranulomatosis, sarcoma, thyroid cancer) have practically no boundaries and metastasize to neighboring tissues.

Tissue destruction causes pain and deterioration of the general condition. Neck pain in the front occurs with tumors of the oral cavity, larynx, thyroid gland. Together with pain, difficulties arise when swallowing, impaired phonation, swelling of the face and neck.

In a bone tumor, the spinal cord and nerve roots are often damaged, resulting in paralysis.

Neck myositis

Appears after hypothermia or prolonged muscle strain. It is characterized by the appearance of acute pain when moving. Soreness can occur both with inflammation of the superficial muscles (sternocleidomastoid), and deep around the spine, involved in neck movements.

Palpation reveals muscle hypertonicity and sometimes hard, painful nodules. Chronic myositis leads to disruption of blood supply, trophism and replacement of muscle cells (myocytes) with connective tissue.

This causes pain and weakness in the muscles of the neck, a violation of the symmetrical work of the muscles on the sides of the spine with the appearance of torticollis: the inability to keep the head strictly in an upright position.

Other diseases causing neck pain

Spondylolisthesis: one vertebra "slides" off the other with disc entrapment.

Bechterew's disease - ankylosing spondylarthritis.

Meningitis. Hypertonicity and stiffness of the neck muscles cause severe back pain in the neck when trying to tilt the head.

How to relieve neck pain with medication

First, you need to determine the possible cause of your neck pain. In any case, limit your mobility. In case of trauma, ensure the immobilization of the damaged section and deliver the patient to the trauma center.

If you have a history of ischemic disease, call an ambulance and stop the pain by sublingual vasodilators, try to calm the patient down.

If there is a possibility of meningitis - if there was contact with a sick person - also call an ambulance. But in all cases - to stop the pain on your own. Do not heat the sore spot!

A good effect is noted from taking non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs - acetic acid. They also reduce morning stiffness and have an antiplatelet effect - they prevent erythrocytes from sticking together.

Propionic acid derivatives also contribute to pain relief. They are low-toxic, well absorbed from the gastrointestinal tract with a sufficient breadth of action.

Option for replacing tableted drugs - suppositories.

If your neck, shoulders and arms hurt

Gels are useful for treating shoulder and arm pain.

Relieve neck pain and tension during muscle spasm

Muscle spasm

To relieve the existing muscle spasm, together with analgesics, it is good to give muscle relaxants.

External remedies for severe cervical pain

To relieve neck pain with cervical osteochondrosis or other diseases, local therapy will not be superfluous - the use of various rubbing and compresses. After using these rubbing, wrap your neck with a warm handkerchief, avoid water ingress.

How to relieve neck pain with folk remedies

Attach a whole kale or burdock leaf to your neck.

Mix 50 ml of horseradish root juice with the same amount of vodka. Rub or apply compresses.

Use kerosene previously settled and passed through activated carbon as a warming agent for grinding.

Make a honey cake from honey and flour, apply to a sore spot.

Use whole honey for grinding, you can - in half with aloe juice.

A mixture obtained by mixing equal parts of radish juice, honey and vodka, use for grinding.

Use chamomile or calendula infusion for compresses on the neck area. Grind horseradish root, add a little water, apply to the sore spot.

Add hot pepper, ammonia or honey to the medicinal bile. Use for compresses.