What to do about a sore neck?

For the past few months, I’ve had a sore neck. The pain was just on one side of the neck (right side) and spread down into my shoulder and the upper quadrant of my back on that side only. It wasn’t debilitating, but always there and so irritating. The pain in my back and shoulder was caused by extremely tight muscles. They were like taut ropes. I tried massage and even paid one of those Chinese massage therapists in the shopping mall but that only made my neck more sore.

I had lots of theories for the cause. At one point I thought it might be crochet since I’m right-handed and that arm moves more in crochet, but a couple of weeks of no crochet failed to bring any relief.

I went to an osteopath who really got stuck into my tight muscles and that provided temporary relief, but it didn’t make the pain go away.

A week ago I decided to visit a physiotherapist. This turned out to be the best decision ever. The physiotherapist could feel that one of my neck vertebrae was slightly off centre, somewhere around c5/c6. This was causing all the tension in my shoulder and upper back on the right side. It also meant I couldn’t turn my head fully to the right, something I hadn’t even noticed until I got the movement back. Gradually, over the past week, I’ve felt all the muscles slowly relax again and it’s bliss.

Moral of the story: don’t put up with a sore neck! Go and see someone.

I took some gorgeous photos of Daniel on the trampoline last week. Here they are:



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8 responses to “What to do about a sore neck?”

  1. A contributory cause to consider is substantial time working with a computer, especially extensive use of mouse.

    I noticed this after MS Windows was extensively deployed at work. There had been a previous drama with RSI (repetitive stress injury) at the data centre where women keyed punched card machines for 8 hours a day. My initial problem was with my left wrist rather than my neck (I am left-handed). When I reported it an OH&S consultant arrived. She asked how long I wanted to be off work (which raises other interesting issues). I said I didn’t want to be off work at all. So we agreed that I would swap to using the mouse right-handedly for a while and she would arrange for me to get a more ergonomic chair – which she did.

    Since then when I feel a problem developing in my neck, arms or wrists, I swap mouse hands.This may not be a perfect recipe to avoid problems but it can certainly help.

    • I have wondered about that but I don’t spend a great deal of time at the computer as I’m chasing children around. I suppose there’s no harm in swapping the mouse to my other hand though.

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