Ah, the sleep! It makes us feel so comfortable and relaxed. From it, we get refreshed, renewed, and feel energetic to start a new day.
Now then, how often do you wake up in the morning with neck pain?
I will wager to guess that it is more than once. This pain can be due to a number of reasons, most of which can be avoided. However, if you are already experiencing this problem, you probably wonder how to relieve neck pain from sleeping wrong.
This article discusses some quick solutions to relieve neck pain from sleeping wrong.
Apply ice or heat to your neck
If you wake up with a sore neck but don’t feel any other signs of an illness, then you may want to try either ice or heat therapy. Some people prefer cold packs over heating pads, while others find the opposite to be true. Experiment and see what feels best for you.
As a general rule of thumb, ice can help reduce inflammation and relieve pain caused by muscle sprains or strains. It’s best used in the early stages after an injury – that is, within 48 hours of when your symptoms first appear. Heat therapy can also be very helpful in reducing pain and muscle spasms.
Many people find that alternating between hot and cold works best for them since each one has its own benefits at different points during the healing process.
If you decide to use both hot and cold on your neck, make sure to give yourself a minimum of 20 minutes between applications so you don’t accidentally burn your skin.
You should also avoid applying ice directly onto bare skin; instead, wrap it up in some sort of material before applying it to avoid damaging yourself further than necessary (it’s recommended to wear gloves as well).
Lastly, remember not to overdo this treatment option—no more than 10 minutes at once for either method unless otherwise instructed by a doctor.
Avoid painful activities
If you have neck pain after sleeping wrong, try to limit or avoid any activity that causes more pain. An unnecessary jerk can cause further damage. This simple step can really help in the first 24 hours after a strain.
Stretch your neck slowly and gently with your hands. Try doing this before getting out of bed in the morning if you woke up with neck pain from sleeping wrong. To stretch your neck properly:
Sit up straight in bed, but don’t hold yourself rigidly upright if that causes more discomfort. It’s best to sit up just enough to support yourself while moving your head slowly to one side until you feel a gentle stretch down the side of your neck into your shoulder and upper back, toward the shoulder blade on that side.
Don’t pull too hard or push too much with your hand; let gravity do most of the work for you as you relax into it for a count of 10 seconds or so. Then gently turn your head to look at something behind you on that same side, again for about 10 seconds, before turning back forward and repeating on both sides 2 or 3 times each.
Gently massage the painful area
Gently massage the painful area. Massaging the muscles in your neck and shoulders can reduce tension, which may help relieve neck pain from sleeping wrong.
A good way to start is by gently massaging your neck and shoulder muscles with your fingertips.
Massage therapy can also help reduce inflammation, which is often a cause of neck pain. You can get a professional massage or use one of these simple techniques:
- Use gentle pressure to rub in small circles around the area that hurts.
- Starting at the base of your skull, move your fingers down either side of your spine about an inch or two (3 to 5 cm) on each side.
- Find any sensitive spots and use gentle pressure for about 5 seconds before moving on. Don’t apply too much pressure — try not to cause yourself any discomfort.
Try sleeping on a firm mattress
No matter how good your intentions are, sometimes you just wake up with a crick in your neck. Perhaps it was an unplanned nap on the couch or a to-do list that took too long, but now you have a stiff neck, and it’s time to get something done about it. While there are many methods of relieving this unpleasant feeling, some work better than others.
Here’s what we found out:
- Sleeping on a firm mattress can help ensure your body is supported during the night. Although one might think an extra-soft bed would be best for someone with back pain, the opposite is true in most cases – a firm surface will give you more support and prevent further injury. However, if you already have back or neck pain when starting to sleep on a firm mattress, there may be underlying issues that need to be addressed as well.
- A visit to the doctor may eventually be necessary. If your pain persists for longer than seven days or worsens over time, it may indicate something more serious than merely sleeping wrong.
Poor posture throughout the day can cause constant stress on the neck muscles; seeing a physician will allow them to better diagnose why these symptoms are happening and come up with ways to treat them (such as physical therapy).
Additionally, if you were injured previously and not properly treated for it at that time, residual complications could be causing your discomfort even now – again, visiting a professional is recommended so they can determine whether this is actually what’s going on.
Rule Out Other Causes of Neck Pain
Remember, neck pain from sleeping in an awkward position is very common. The first thing you should do is to try to determine whether or not your neck pain could be caused by something more serious. If you have been experiencing neck pain for a couple of days, then that might not be anything to worry about – but if it persists for longer than a week, then it’s time to see a doctor.
If you suspect that your neck pain is caused by something other than sleeping wrong, then it’s time to see your GP.