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Quarantined: Overcoming Neck Pain during COVID-19 Season

While in the midst of the COVID-19 fallout, many people in the Greenville are still suffering with neck pain on a daily basis.  However, most of the clients that we’re helping don’t complain of unbearable pain.  Instead, they’re quietly suffering from a low-grade but persistent pain in their neck — along with the added worry that each passing day, the pain will get worse and cause them to permanently forgo their active lifestyle with friends and loved ones.

The location of pain and discomfort is often in the upper back, base of the neck, and base of the head.  There are many muscles that had hold tension so the particular region that is the source of pain varies from person to person.

To have an idea what could be contributing to neck pain, a phone or virtual consultation would be needed.  Although there are differences in how we treat different types of neck pain, we’ve found that common limitations exist.

Some factors that contribute to neck pain include overuse of the shallow neck flexor muscles. In addition, there can be weakness of the deep neck, upper back, and shoulder stabilizer muscles.  The body will often compensate for weakness in these regions with tension, knots, and trigger points that develop in the neck, shoulder, and upper “trap” muscles.

Once we have an understading what the limitations are, our first recommendation that we usually make is to be mindful of how much time we are spending in front of our screens.  Taking breaks and and keeping a good posture when reading are good habit to develop.

Making simple changes allows for an environment for irritation to settle down.  While making these changes usually helps with pain, we know to fully restore neck health, we have to address the underlying imbalances that have developed.

With our patients that are coming into our clinic, alleviating pain may begin with hand-on therapy.  For our virtual consultations, our approach includes instruction of self-myofascial release.  Pain improvements can be made very quickly with targeted tissue work of the neck, upper trap, and upper back muscles.

However, we know that for pain improvements to last, we need to develop stability and strength.   We teach activation exercises to help our clients better engage muscles that are not firing well.  Some of theses muscles include the deep neck flexors, lower trapezius, infraspinatus, lats, and serratus anterior.

Finally, to keep the pain from text neck from returning quickly, we need to develop strength through weight-training exercises.  These may include one-armed presses, pulls, and other movements that help the body engage many stabilizing muscles at once.

Even in these unprecedented times, resolving neck pain is possible when addressed with a comprehensive in-person or virtual physical therapy program.  However, ignoring pain can cascade into more problems down the road.  If you have neck pain and want a long term solution, the physical therapists at Movement Solutions would be glad to be a resource for you. 

We have a free guide on relieving neck and shoulder pain that can give you further insight into neck pain and help kick start your recovery.  We are available for a free 15-minute phone or virtual consultation to talk about how your pain is affecting you and discuss your treatment options.

If you prefer an in-person consultation, we’re open and offering a limited number of free one-to-one Discovery Visit’s at our office. 

These Discovery Sessions are for those who are considering working with us and want to have a discussion to ensure that working together is a good fit.  You will have the opportunity to ask questions, obtain clarity about your condition, and develop confidence that we can help you. 

If you’re ready to hit the ground running and want to book an appointment, you can inquire about cost and availability and get the process started.

If you’re in pain and unsure about what your next steps should be, call us at (864) 558-7346 and ask how we can help.

Physical Therapist Dr. Tim Varghese

Dr. Tim Varghese

Movement Solutions

"We Help Active Adults, Ages 40-60+ Overcome Pain And Injuries And Get Back To Their Favorite Activities Without Unnecessary Medications, Injections, Or Surgeries."