The neck is both extremely flexible and capable of supporting your head. These qualities are an important part of how the neck functions, but it does make it vulnerable to painful symptoms. Below are some prominent causes of these symptoms:
Muscle strain is a common cause of neck pain, often as a result of overuse.
A classic and rather common example of such overuse is when you spend a lot of hours hunched in front of your smartphone or computer. However, your neck muscles could also be sprained by small things such as gritting your teeth or reading when you are in bed.
Wear and tear in your joints
Your neck is a joint as well and much like other joints tends to become worn out with age. The cartilage cushion between your bones can decay over time and this could be because of conditions like osteoarthritis.
In these cases, the body forms bone spurs and they have a bad effect on the motion of your joints. This causes pain as well.
Compression of nerves
The bones in your neck, also known as vertebrae, can develop spurs and the disks can become herniated. These can put pressure on the nerves of your neck. They can branch out from your spinal cord and thus lead to pain in the neck.
There are several injuries that can lead to neck pain. For example, car accidents that result in whiplash. In this case, your head gets jerked backward followed by a forward motion. This strains the soft tissues that are there in the neck.
There are a few diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, cancer, and meningitis that can cause pain in your neck.
How to prevent neck pain?
In most cases, neck pain happens because of a combination of wear and tear due to age and bad posture. You should also try and keep your head centered on your spine. This would prevent the occurrence of neck pain. You can also make some simple changes to your daily routine, such as:
- using a good posture
- taking breaks on a frequent basis
- adjusting your desk, computer, and chair in such a way that you are at ease while working
- not tucking the phone between your ear and shoulder when you walk
- quitting smoking
- not carrying heavy bags that have straps over the shoulder
- sleeping in a good position