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Mechanical neck pain

Published: October 30, 2019

Neck pain is a common experience, with nearly 50 percent of people developing neck pain at some stage in their lives. The most common type of neck pain is mechanical neck pain. It occurs when neck strain exceeds the tissue capacity to take load. It often arises after a bad night’s sleep or insidiously without any identifiable incident. The causes of mechanical neck pain are often multifactorial, which may include poor posture, poor sleep, upper back stiffness, muscle tightness around the neck, inactivity, emotional stress and overuse with occupational or sporting activities.

Common complaints of mechanical neck pain include:

  1. Pain or difficulty turning head
  2. Neck Stiffness
  3. Muscle tightness
  4. Pain in neck

Pain originating in the neck can also be felt in the upper back, shoulder or arm. It can also manifest as headache or cause nausea, vomiting and dizziness.

It is recommended that you seek help from a physiotherapist as soon as symptoms occur. Physiotherapy can help to alleviate your neck pain and promote movement in your spine. Physiotherapy treatment may include:

  1. Vertebral joint mobilisation
  2. Soft tissue massage
  3. Postural correction
  4. Clinical exercise to improve neck and upper back muscles strength and endurance. These exercises will help you to improve your posture and prevent overuse of your joints and muscles
  5. Ergonomic advice and modification
  6. Advice on pillow choices and sleeping postures

Frequent use of a heat pack can also help to reduce muscle tension around the neck. Should you wish to see a physiotherapist to assist with your neck pain, feel free to contact us on 03 9421 1626 or alternatively book online via our website.



Debbie Chan (MPhysio) – Physiotherapist, Back in Motion Northcote