Muscle spasms are often a way for our bodies to let us know that something is wrong with our lifestyle. Maybe you have overworked your back muscles at the gym, or your posture has not been the best during the workday at your computer, or you binge-watched a TV show last night curled up on a sofa. Luckily, there are many ways to relieve the pain and prevent it in the future.
We at Bright Side want our readers to feel their absolute best, which is why we are offering you these tips to help you get rid of pain in the neck and back.
1. Heat and ice therapy
For the first 48 to 72 hours, doctors recommend applying ice to the painful area (for 10-20 minutes at a time). Ice packs help prevent inflammation, and slow nerve impulses, which helps to numb the pain. If the muscles are still sore and stiff after that, use heat with the help of warm showers, hot compresses, etc. This will increase the blood flow and loosen muscle tightness.
2. Gentle massage
It is always a good idea to seek help from a professional massage therapist, but if your case is not very serious, you can ask your partner or even do it yourself. First, lightly rub the muscle that is spasming and gently press the painful area. If this does not help, try pinching and holding the area.
3. Stay hydrated
Medical specialists warn that among the numerous unpleasant results of not getting enough water throughout the day, you can experience muscle cramps and spasms. So, make sure to drink water regularly. And in order to calculate the amount of water you need, you can read our article.
4. Exercise, but not right away
If you faced the problem of muscle spasms in your neck or back, it might very well be caused by your physical activity. Specialists recommend that you stop being active for only the first few days, then start doing mild exercises and stretching.
The exercises you should avoid during this time include:
Contact sports, etc.
When it comes to stretching, you can lightly lift your shoulders and then lower them, roll the shoulders forward and back. It would be a good idea to ask your doctor or physical therapist about other stretching exercises that are safe in your situation.
Go back to your regular routine after 2-3 weeks.
5. Pillow check
A common reason for back and neck pain is that you’re sleeping on the wrong type of pillows and mattresses that do not support your neck. It is worthwhile to try sleeping on a special neck pillow. This can be a feather or memory foam pillow that fits your head and neck’s shape. Also, it should not be high or stiff.
6. Use a soft neck collar
Wearing a soft neck collar significantly limits your movements, and this measure should be discussed with your doctor.
7. Lay down and relax
Muscle spasms are a clear indicator that you need rest, and this measure works for calming the pain at the moment. Medical specialists advise their patients to lie down on their back and put a cervical pillow under their head and another pillow underneath their knees. To make this experience even more relaxing, listen to your favorite music or use aromatherapy.
8. Think about the future
There are a lot of ways to prevent pain in the neck and back — here are some that have been recommended by doctors:
- If you work on a computer for hours on end, do some stretching exercises regularly at your workplace (every hour or so).
- Use a special holder to keep the documents that you are reading at eye level to keep your neck straight.
- Do not wear high heels.
Additionally, it is important to get enough vitamin D and calcium in your diet.
We hope that these tips will help you get rid of muscle spasms and fully enjoy a pain-free life! Do you know of any other tips worth trying out? Please, share them in the comments!