Neck Pain

Neck pain is a common ailment that presents as painful tension, stiffness, or general discomfort in the neck area. Symptoms can range from temporary discomfort to long-lasting, chronic pain.

Causes of Neck Pain

The causes of neck pain are diverse and include muscle imbalances due to unilateral movements, poor posture such as excessive screen use, improper sleeping position, stress, unhealthy diet, injuries, blockages of intervertebral joints, and age-related wear and tear. Neck pain often arises as an expression of dysfunction in the masticatory system, known as Temporomandibular Disorder of the Joints (TMJ). The compression and misalignment of the jaw joint significantly affect the overall body posture. However, static problems originating from the feet can also cause neck pain. Additional muscle tension is exacerbated by lack of movement and acidification of connective tissue due to dietary factors.

Therefore, a holistic and interdisciplinary approach to neck pain is crucial for achieving long-term healing and stability.

Diagnosis and Treatment of Neck Pain

Before treatment, thorough diagnostics should be performed to identify the cause of neck pain. Only then can targeted therapy be carried out. Diagnosis includes detailed medical history, physical examination, and primarily imaging techniques such as X-rays and MRI scans.

Treatment of neck pain in acute situations involves therapy with pain-relieving and anti-inflammatory medications, herbal remedies, as well as muscle relaxants. Physiotherapeutic measures, heat applications, massages, and chiropractic techniques are also used. In cases of severe or persistent symptoms, injections such as neural therapy or PRP may be administered by a physician.

Depending on the causes, targeted, individualized exercises are employed to strengthen or stretch the neck muscles with regard to posture. Modification of tissue acid-base regulation, particularly through dietary changes, can also lead to improvement. Optimization of micronutrients is another important therapeutic option.

Home Remedies for Neck Pain

As muscular issues are often the primary cause, the initial goal should be to release tension in the neck. There are many methods that can be tried initially, including:

  • Heat applications, often very helpful. These can be applied with heating pads, such as popular cherry stone pillows, or with infrared lamps. Hot water bottles should be used with caution as they can easily cause burns. Hot baths with relaxing additions like lavender and rosemary can be beneficial, as well as hot showers with simultaneous stretching exercises.
  • Exercises involving strengthening and stretching should become part of daily routine, especially in the workplace. Yoga and Pilates have proven effective here.
  • For relaxation, progressive muscle relaxation according to Jacobsen and meditation are beneficial.
  • Acupressure can also be a good initial measure for relieving pain.

Prevention of Neck Pain

Prevention plays a crucial role and includes regular exercise, balanced nutrition, correct posture, moderate physical activity, ergonomic work environment, regular breaks during screen time, healthy sleep habits, and stress management. Additionally, gentle strength training focusing on the upper back muscles can contribute to relief.

Dr. med. Karsten Ostermann M.A.

Various complementary medicine approaches are available. An integrative physician can create an individualized concept aimed not only at alleviating symptoms but also addressing the underlying causes.

Dr. Karsten Ostermann

Further information

The information listed contains relevant topics and serves to improve understanding.