Health Literacy

Tips on Relieving Neck Pain

Relieving Neck Pain

Neck pain affects millions of individuals daily. The solutions to alleviate this discomfort can vary widely, with numerous medications and therapies available, each yielding different results for different people. Nevertheless, several proven methods exist for relieving neck pain, showing the greatest potential for efficacy.

Maintaining Eye-Level Work

In today’s tech-driven era, constantly looking down at devices like tablets, laptops, or smartphones can strain neck muscles significantly. Opt for working at eye level whenever feasible. Hold your smartphone at head level, prop up your tablet on a desk, or elevate your laptop screen with a secondary monitor or stand. This adjustment reduces strain and promotes better neck posture during work.

Embrace Good Posture

Posture often goes overlooked, yet poor posture is increasingly common. Sitting upright with feet firmly planted is the ideal sitting posture. Consider an ergonomically designed chair for added back and neck support. When standing or walking, proper posture involves shoulders back, chest out, head up, and eyes looking straight ahead. Avoid hunching over while typing to minimize neck strain.

Incorporate Exercise

Exercise presents a multifaceted approach by promoting relaxation, muscle stretching, and good posture. While initially daunting, especially with existing neck pain, regular exercise gradually diminishes discomfort, provided it’s practiced correctly.

Sleeping Adjustments

A mattress or pillow that’s too soft may lead to awkward sleeping positions, contributing to neck pain. Opt for a firm mattress to maintain proper spine alignment during sleep. However, choose a pillow that’s neither overly soft nor extremely firm; feather or crushed foam pillows strike a comfortable balance. Additionally, favor sleeping on your back or side over stomach sleeping to alleviate neck strain.

Baths and Massages

Massages are renowned for alleviating neck pain by relieving muscle tension and inducing relaxation. Professional massages aren’t the only option; a gentle massage from a partner can be equally effective. Hot baths also work wonders by reducing muscle tension, enhancing the effects of a subsequent massage.

Over-the-Counter (OTC) Pain Relief

OTC pain relievers are commonly tried for neck pain, yet their effectiveness varies among individuals. Consulting a doctor for recommended medications, considering existing medical conditions or potential interactions, is crucial.


Allow sufficient time for these methods to exhibit their full effects before dismissing them. Immediate relief may not always occur, with some methods taking days to manifest noticeable changes. If significant pain relief isn’t experienced after several weeks, consulting a doctor is advisable. It could indicate an underlying medical condition requiring specialized treatment beyond these general remedies.

Would you like to receive similar articles by email?

Dr. Jade Marie Tomaszewski is a pathologist-in-training at McGill University, where she also did her degree in MSc Pathology. She obtained her medical degree (MD) from the University of the Philippines, after completing a BSc in Molecular Biology and Biotechnology. In her (little) spare time, she enjoys spending time with family, curling up with a book and a large mug of tea, and trying out new recipes in the kitchen. You can follow her on LinkedIn and Twitter.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *