If you're living with chronic neck pain, you may feel miserable most of the time, especially when you first wake up in the morning. Neck pain might be due to an injury, arthritis, muscle strain, or nerve compression. If your neck is healing, you may need to live with the pain for a while.
Seeing a pain management doctor might help. You can get treatments and learn coping techniques so your pain is as tolerable as possible until it goes away.
Here are four pain management treatments that might help your chronic pain.
Anti-inflammatory medications might help if swelling contributes to your pain or causes compression on a nerve. You might also need muscle relaxants if tense muscles cause your neck pain. These medications may not cure your problem, but they can make it easier to live with the pain.
If your neck pain interferes with your ability to get things done or go to work, your pain management doctor might try injections that decrease inflammation in your neck to reduce pain for a longer period of time than oral anti-inflammatory drugs can.
2. Hot Or Cold Therapy
You could try soaking in a hot bath so the water is up over your neck. Hot baths sometimes help with pain. The heat increases blood circulation, and that might even help with healing. You may also want to try putting ice packs on your neck.
Ice packs decrease swelling and may help with pain relief. You may find one treatment works better than the other, so choose the one you like best as long as your doctor encourages you to do so.
3. Physical Therapy
Your doctor might send you to physical therapy to learn how to strengthen and stretch your neck. Pain might be made worse by poor posture and neck strain. Exercise can strengthen weak muscles and keep your neck flexible. You might also get massage treatments in physical therapy that relax tight muscles and increase circulation.
A physical therapist can also help you learn better posture and give you exercises to do on your core and back muscles so it's easier to have good posture and put less strain on your neck. They may also advise you on a good sleep position so you can take the strain off of your neck at night.
4. Relaxation Therapy
Pain management might also include learning stress reduction techniques and relaxation methods that help you deal better with pain. You may even benefit from a therapist who can teach you mental methods for dealing with pain. Being able to shift your reaction or relax tense muscles might lessen your pain so you're able to live with it better until your healing is complete.