Understanding morning stiffness – a guide to sleep associated neck pain

A stiff neck could result from staring down at your computer or staying in one posture too long. However, nothing compares to a stiff, painful neck that you get from poor sleeping behavior. You might think that it’s a usual thing, but ideally, we shouldn’t be experiencing such discomfort. With the right habits and environments, sleep should result in a well-rested and refreshed body. Not a bundle of sores pains and aches. You may be here because you’re tired of those morning stiffies, or just want to know how to promote your neck health. Yes, neck health is a thing. There are plenty of whack treatments for a stiff, painful neck. Most of which often end in regret. We took the liberty to prepare you neck pains tell all. If you want to find out what is causing this discomfort and how you can fix it, read on to find out. 

Why you have stiffness

Neck pain is caused by poor sleeping posture. Having your neck bent a particular direction for too long might lead to this stiffness. Without the right support, you are in danger of developing this pain while you sleep. People that sleep on their stomachs’ are more at risk, sorry stomach sleepers. Not to say that anyone who likes to rest on their belly should stop immediately. This posture has its own benefits. However, you may want to invest in supplementary sleeping material to support your head correctly. If you cannot afford to get new stuff, practice some new positions. This way, you will be able to switch up throughout the night and avoid stiffness.

Did you know there is a right and wrong kind of pillow? The wrong kind might give you neck aches and do more damage than you would have received without a pillow. Some pillows bend your head forward and worsen the situation. Ideally, your pillow shouldn’t push your head to a weird elevation angle. Your neck should remain parallel to the mattress. This

Sleep tip: Every sleeping position comes with its own pros and cons. Before you settle on one, make sure to investigate each f them and establish which suits your sleeping habits best.

Here are some remedies to ease your pain

Mild neck pain

Mild neck pain

This degree of pain is manageable with some alternating hot-cold packs. You may apply ice for the first day and then switch to hot packs afterward. These compresses may help with the pain and ease joint and muscle movement. Try to do constant slight movements to stretch out your neck muscles. If you really can’t take the pain, consider taking a mild pain killer and then proceed with the light stretches. Do not exaggerate the movements; this could get very painful and cause even more inflammation.

Severe neck pain

There might be instances when the pain is too much to bear. Trying to be hardcore and enduring the pain might work against you and worsen the situation. Sure a mild painkiller and a massage might ease the pain for a while, but medical attention is more advisable. If you have experienced regular neck pain before, you know what it’s supposed to feel like. Extreme discomfort might indicate something even more serious is going down. Make sure you see your health care provider or chiropractor for further insight. You might end up with some stronger pain killers, a soft neck collar and a couple of days off work.

Preventive measures for a pain-free neck experience

pain-free neck experience

Instead of bearing the pain and regret of choosing a poor sleeping pose or cursing yourself for skipping out on regular stretches, here are a few ways you can prevent neck pain and stiffness.

Supplement your sleeping style

You might not have it in you to continually change sleeping positions throughout the night without disturbing your sleep, and that’s okay. With the right supplementary materials, you can effectively avoid stiffness. For back sleepers, pillows under the knees and under your head will work just fine. All sleeping postures can accommodate and benefit from a nice firm pillow. Remember, the point isn’t how well you fall inside your pillow; it is to keep your neck parallel to the mattress. Any lower or higher angles will only cause damage. Stomach sleepers have their necks twisted to one side for most of the night. Because of this awkward stance, a good supportive pillow is necessary.

Get a new mattress

new mattress

It might not seem like the big EUREKA solution but trust me; a good mattress can do wonders for your body and sleep. Finding a fitting mattress is not just about what you want. It is influenced by what you need for the best sleep experience. The degree of mattress firmness must be able to support your sleeping position, other sleeping habits, and your weight obviously. Many people consider softness as the number one requirement for a mattress, but spoiler alert, it’s not. If you decide to get rid of your sleep buddy and find a new one Tuft and needle offer a variety of mattress choices. These accommodate various requirements you may have for a good night’s sleep.

Regular exercise and stretching

The big E might be just what you need. Exercise isn’t just for losing weight or fitness freaks. You don’t even have to hit the gym and make it an entire lifestyle if you don’t want to. It is actually one of the best things you could do for your sleep and future self. Some light cardio, stretching and calorie burning exercises are enough. During your workout sessions or right before bed, you may incorporate some light neck stretches to keep those muscles from tensing up and causing you trouble.

Final word

If I could, I’d return all the stiff neck experiences I have had my entire life. They not only keep you from turning your head, an essential motion for day to day tasks like sideways conversations but also make the following nights quite tricky. The best way to combat these stiffies is with good support in bed and regular stretches. You might already be in a stiff neck situation these remedies should help you through it and hopefully keep them away, permanently!

An undergraduate and avid netizen, Suman is the youngest member of Loudhere family. She manages the News and Current Events category here. Also she employs her SEO skills to make this more searchable.