Have you ever woken up with a sore neck or even a sore back? Neck and back pain is a common result of poor posture. If you did not have the pain before going to sleep but woke up with it, then it is most likely due to the way you sleep.
The most common way of sleeping is on your side or on your back. Sleeping on your stomach is not recommended as this puts your neck into a stretched position. When sleeping, you should check to make sure that you have an appropriate size pillow and that it provides proper support to your head and neck. Ideally, when you are lying on your side, your neck should be aligned with the rest of your spine. If you feel your head is angled upward, then the pillow is too big. If you feel your head is angled downward, then the pillow is not thick enough.
Try this to see if your pillow is providing proper support to your head and neck:
Lie on your right side and try running your left hand along the hollow of your neck. If you are able to run your hand through towards the back, then there is nothing supporting your neck. Take a towel, roll it up into a log and place it along the bottom of your pillow, inside your pillow case. This towel now acts as a support for your neck. Experiment with how thick or thin you should roll the towel in order to achieve proper neck alignment with the rest of your spine. This is very similar to cervical pillows which are shaped like the contour of your neck.
Seeing a Massage Therapist may help in relieving the tension in your muscles. Daily neck stretches are also helpful as they will help to maintain range of motion and flexibility in the muscles. If you have persistent neck pain, you should see a physiotherapist for an assessment. You may be suffering from arthritis, degenerative disc disease or you may just need some head and neck positional training. A Kinesiologist or Physiotherapist will be able to assist you in learning and performing the appropriate exercises.
If you have been in a car accident or have incurred an impact while playing sports, you may be suffering from whiplash injury. Our physiotherapists can assess you for a whiplash injury and can help you recover quickly from this injury.