We are no strangers to neck and shoulder pain.
At some point or the other, we have all encountered either a mild discomfort or a severe throbbing pain that threatens to derail our entire day.
Of course, if it is the latter, then one uses either pain balms or medication to keep the pain at bay.
Doctors usually prescribe nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs for the pain.
However, prolonged use of such drugs can lead to some really bad side-effects.
It is important to ascertain the cause of pain in the neck and shoulder as that would help in quickly handling the problem.
There are many reasons for neck and shoulder pain ranging from poor posture, frozen neck or shoulder, pinched nerve or just plain overuse.
A bad posture can lead to neck and shoulder pain.
Whether you are sitting, standing or lying down, ensure that you have proper posture.
Overuse of the neck and shoulder muscles can cause fatigue and pain as the joints are unable to handle the huge amount of stress.
The pinched nerve condition occurs when too much pressure is applied on a nerve or there is a lot of compression on the nerve in the neck and shoulder. The pain is also felt along one of the arms.
Frozen shoulder occurs when there is no movement due to pain and inflammation brought about by an injury. Gradual movement will help ease the pain.
Besides these four conditions, there are other more serious medical complications that can cause neck and shoulder pain.
Here is what you need to look out for:
Swelling of the tendon
If the tendons (the band that attaches your muscle to your bone) swell, then it can cause tendonitis, leading to pain and also causing the neck and shoulder area to be frozen.
Referred to as bursitis, this condition is caused by an inflammation of the bursa, which is a sac that surrounds the shoulder joint.
It is normally caused by overuse, trauma or even gout, arthritis and infection.
Whiplash and osteoarthritis
Whiplash, which is the rapid, forceful movement of the neck joint, and osteoarthritis, can also result in neck and shoulder pain.
Lymph node inflammation
An infection can cause the lymph nodes in the neck and shoulder region to get inflamed and become tender, leading to pain.
Here are two tried and tested home remedies to help you deal with the pain.
Hot and cold compress
Alternating between hot and cold compress on the affected area several times in a day or doing the same while taking a shower (alternate between hot and cold water) will help you get relief from the inflammation.
Keep the neck and shoulder mobile
We all have a problem. When something pains, we tend to not move thinking it will hurt. Not moving the affected area for a long time is not a good idea.
Of course, this does not mean that you keep the affected areas moving all the time.
Wait for 48 hours for the pain or inflammation to subside, then gently move your neck and shoulder. The mobility will help restore the flexibility of the muscles there.