What causes a stiff neck?
Neck pain is a widespread complaint in the information age, with many of us spending a great deal of time hunched over a computer, tablet or phone, or slouching in front of the TV. It’s also a prevalent ailment of aging, due to cumulative wear and tear on the spine’s joints and tissues. Assuming an injury or underlying disease isn’t causing the condition, here are some tips for managing the discomfort, as well as the best stiff neck remedies.
Sleep off a stiff neck
If you’re looking for stiff neck relief, getting a good night’s sleep – which represents roughly a third of your day – is a good place to start. Choose a relatively firm mattress and use only enough pillows to keep your head level with the rest of your body – one is usually sufficient. For slumber that is even more neck-friendly, try lying on your back with pillow support under your knees. This will flatten and relax your spinal muscles.
Make your workstation easier on your neck
When it comes to computer use, make sure the monitor is at arm’s length and eye level. Laptops have poor posture built into their designs: if the keyboard is near enough to be comfortable, then the screen is too close, and if the screen is positioned correctly, the keyboard is too far away, forcing you to hunch. You can solve this problem by placing the device on a stack of large books or a laptop stand and using a separate keyboard and mouse.