If you’re experiencing sudden neck strain, whether it’s from a fall or car accident, it’s important to take the right steps to recover and manage the pain and inflammation. As a massage therapist, I’m here to help you understand how massage therapy can help you recover and provide you with some tips to maintain mobility and ease your pain.
First, it’s important to understand that if your neck strain was sudden and traumatic, it’s best to use cold therapy for the first 3-7 days. This will help to manage the pain and inflammation. Once that initial acute stage is over, it’s ok to apply heat. Cold therapy can be applied by using an ice pack wrapped in a towel or a bag of frozen vegetables.
Next, it’s important to keep moving your neck, or if that’s too uncomfortable, just moving your eyes. This is how we are wired! So, to keep the neck muscles contracting, add eye movement in the direction you want to move. For example, to maintain right rotation of the neck, try looking to the right while turning your head to the right. This can help augment maintaining rotation of the neck.
In addition to this, there are some exercises you can do to help maintain mobility:
- Add neck stretches to keep lengthening the neck: try looking at your opposite armpit and hold for 30 sec
- Chin tucks are a multipurpose exercise. During the chin tuck muscles at the back of the neck are lengthened as well as the deep neck flexors in the front are strengthened
Lastly, and most importantly, it’s important to get physiotherapy and massage. A physiotherapist will assess your condition and provide you with the right treatment plan. Massage therapy can help to reduce muscle pain, soreness, and stiffness, and it can also improve muscle recovery after a workout. Regular massage sessions can help you achieve your fitness goals faster and stay injury-free.
It’s important to note that if you don’t treat a sore neck, it can lead to chronic pain, headaches, and muscle imbalances, which can affect your daily activities and quality of life. It can also lead to a decrease in range of motion and mobility, making it harder for you to perform even the simplest of tasks. So, don’t wait to get the treatment you need, take action now and start your recovery journey.
Not sure about where to start? Have any questions? Our physiotherapist can help you have a better workout. You can book your appointment with Anil Rao, PT or Duane Brousmiche, PT to discuss any of your questions about your exercise routine.
You can book online or call at 613-825-3837