Why am I Waking Up With Neck Pain?

Neck Pain

Neck Pain

When patients ask me ‘why do I get neck pain?’ it can sometimes be a difficult question to answer. Not because I don’t know how to ease neck pain, but because I don’t know their personal circumstances.

However, what I can suggest, is that your nighttime routine might be causing you neck pain.

Why do You ask? Let Me Explain…

What many people don’t seem to know is that the head is designed to be in a position where the ears are vertically in line with the shoulders. Having the head in line with the shoulders, it provides stronger support to your head from your neck.

If your head is slightly tilted, then the support won’t be as great and it will cause your neck to feel all the pressure.

One thing that many people probably don’t really think of, is sleeping with multiple pillows.

Sleeping with 2 pillows can cause havoc on your neck if they don’t support your head correctly. If you have 2 pillows, they can sometimes prop your head upwards and forwards.

By doing this, your head is in an unusual position and will continue to be for roughly eight hours. Because your head isn’t properly supported, your neck takes the role of support while you’re asleep.

A general rule I have is to sleep with one pillow. It may feel awkward at first (and by awkward I mean flat), but once you get used to it, it will make a difference. If you only have one pillow, it supports your head while still allowing it to stay in line with the body, giving your neck a rest!

Reading checking emails or playing on your phone before bed is also neck pain triggers. Whichever it is, the same action is applied to them; tilting your head.

Because your head is tilted, the shoulders aren’t providing support anymore so your neck compensates. To do this, your neck tenses its muscles to keep your head where it is.

And if you think about it, if your neck DIDN’T tense those muscles, your head would just fall forward.

So because of this, your body is in an unusual position. If you’re reading, checking emails, or playing on your phone for about 1 hour each night, then is it any wonder why your neck is hurting?

But the pain doesn’t stop there…

Now imagine going to sleep on two pillows while reading for around an hour. By doing this, you can see that you may be causing your neck to be in pain before it even hits the pillow!

When you look back and think about it, it makes you truly think about what damage you’re doing to your neck without realizing it.

Now that you know how easily your neck muscles can be tensed, you should be able to make the appropriate adjustments.

Even if it means less reading time before bed or getting one supportive pillow for your head, you’ll be making a difference and will be easing any neck pain that may be caused at night!

If you’re looking for even more tips on how to naturally ease neck pain, here’s a FREE report for you to download instantly:

Nick Hunter, PT, DPT

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