Neck spasms are involuntary muscular contractions in the neck. Essentially, the muscles turn hard, taut and painful.
These spasms might arise after an injury, poor posture, overuse or stress. It is likely to arise among individuals who engage in continuous computer work who develop a stiff neck. The spasms might also occur after an uncomfortable sleep at night.
What are the indications?
The neck muscles might harden, tighten and become painful. Once the muscles that extend from the shoulder to the head spasm, it can even trigger headaches.
There are also sore sites in the neck which are oftentimes called as trigger points that can activate discomfort in other sites of the body.
Management of neck spasms
Some of the measures utilized in managing neck spasms include the following:
- Stretching exercises
- Medications such as anti-inflammatory drugs or a muscle relaxant.
- An ice pack can be applied on the affected area several times throughout the day.
- Moist heat can be used for recurrent neck spasms.
- Physical therapy
If these treatment options fail to work, the doctor might suggest a shot of steroid or anesthetic into the muscle.
Proper management of stress is also part of treatment for neck spasms. Remember that the spasms are typically triggered by stress or depression.
The discomfort caused by the neck spasms might last for a few days up to a few weeks. The individual should avoid activities that triggers the pain until the muscles have fully recuperated.