After my second neck fusion surgery I decided it was time to get serious about maintaining my neck to keep it as pain-free and loose as possible. I’ve compiled a list of my most effective tips to help you with your neck issues.
Feel free to experiment and try different things on this list. Not everything will work for everyone. Depending on your underlying medical condition, some of these methods will work better than others.
Best Methods To Manage Neck Pain
- Electric Neck Massagers
- Non-electric Massagers
- Topical Products
5 Best Neck Massagers To Treat Chronic Pain
Should You Choose An Electric Or A Non-Electric Neck Massager?
This comes down to three major factors:
- Personal preference
- Whether you are doing all this yourself or you have a partner
I have multiple massaging devices because I got some before I met my husband as well as back when I had less money. They worked when I needed them but they required more effort on my part to have them be effective.
My Favorite Non-Electric Neck Massagers
The Theracane is one of the most useful and simple tools to massage your own neck, back, and many other areas all by yourself. The kind folks at Theracane have produced a wonderful and all-inclusive guide to how to use their device to achieve the best effect.
Don’t Forget Your Neck Stretches!!
The following image is a great example of some effective neck stretches from Active Chiropractic. Be mindful that if your stretching results in a sharp stabbing pain that radiates into your arms and hands – you need to s top the stretch. Don’t make things worse by pushing it.
That being said, when suffering from chronic neck pain with muscle spasms, these neck stretches can make all the difference in getting through your day.
Going To The Chiropractor For Neck Pain
This might be controversial, but I can say that my chiropractor has made all the difference for me in managing my neck pain. I had two neck fusions because of chronic neck pain and I believe 100% that if I had started chiropractic care earlier I could have prevented the second surgery.
Many people are scared of going to the chiropractic because of the fear that it will hurt or that it will make them feel worse. However, check out this study:
Another study, funded by the National Institutes of Health and published in the Annals of Internal Medicine in 2012, tested the effectiveness of different approaches for treating mechanical neck pain: 272 participants were divided into three groups that received either spinal manipulative therapy (SMT) from a doctor of chiropractic, pain medication (over-the-counter pain relievers, narcotics and muscle relaxants) or exercise recommendations. After 12 weeks, about 57 percent of those who met with chiropractors and 48 percent who exercised reported at least a 75 percent reduction in pain, compared to 33 percent of the people in the medication group. After one year, approximately 53 percent of the drug-free groups continued to report at least a 75 percent reduction in pain, compared to just 38 percent pain reduction among those who took medication.ACA Today
Finding The Right Chiropractor
Just like in any other area of life, there are good chiropractors and not so good ones. You’ll want to get some good referrals from people you trust.
Your chiropractor should listen to you and try to understand where your problems are coming from. Someone who does the exact same adjustment pattern for every patient isn’t going to be paying attention to your particular issue. You might be helped, but you very well may not be.
I also don’t let my chiropractor do the standard “neck twist” adjustment that is so popular. I have many reasons why I don’t like that type of adjustment and my chiropractor respects that. There are many, many ways to adjust the neck to manipulate the neck bones so that they move more freely.
For anyone who has chronic neck pain, there are many ways to get help. From electric and non-electric neck massagers to visiting a chiropractor, relief is out there is you look for it.
I know that it can seem that your neck pain will never get better (been there), but it can if you experiment with different methods.