Neck and shoulder pain can put a real crimp in your day, no matter what you’re doing. It can be distracting and stressful, as well as making it hard to move.
There are many things that can be a literal pain in the neck. Sitting unnaturally, sleeping odd, and watching TV at an angle are a few. If you work with phones all day, holding a phone with your shoulder too long could do it too.
There’s another cause you may not have considered, though. Your hands! Read on to find out why, and for some natural neck and shoulder pain relief remedies.
Why It Happens
We use our hands for hundreds of activities every day. Most of those activities put our hands in unnatural positions, which causes stress and tension. Typing, chopping food, holding electronics, and writing are a few good examples of this.
Over time, if you don’t relieve it, that tension can travel all the way up to your neck and shoulders. This, of course, results in pain, and all that comes with it.
Stretch It Out
One way to help relieve tension before it turns into pain is by stretching the stressed muscles. A simple exercise to try would be to periodically ball your hands into fists, then spread the fingers wide. A few repetitions of this can help reduce tension before it becomes too bad.
Another method incorporates massaging with stretching the hand muscles. For this, you’ll want a tennis ball and a flat, hard surface. If you don’t have a tennis ball, something in foam or rubber that’s similar in shape, size, and density might work.
Start by placing the ball on the flat surface, then place your hand on the ball. You’ll want to roll your hand back and forth over the ball, making sure to press down and apply pressure. The resistance of the ball will act like a rolling massage device, like those massaging chairs.
When you start this, pay special attention to the pad under where the thumb meets the rest of the hand. A lot of tension builds up here, so it’s probably going to hurt at first. Once you’ve relieved some of that stress, it should start feeling better.
After you’ve done that for a few minutes, switch to pivoting your hand in a circle on the ball. Think of it as if you were rolling an orange around before you juiced it, if that helps. This will help loosen up the rest of the muscles in your hand.
Switch to the other side as needed, then finish it off by doing a nice overhead stretch. You should feel a lot better!
See It in Action
Acupressure For Neck & Shoulder Pain Relief
If you don’t have access to the ball method, or just want to try something else, there’s always reflexology. It’s also known as acupressure, and it’s another natural method of neck and shoulder pain relief.
It works by applying pressure to certain spots in the body, which then relieves tension and stress elsewhere. The spot on your hands is located just under the web between your thumb and forefinger.
To achieve pain relief, gently place the thumb of your opposite hand in this soft, fleshy spot, and press for 2-3 minutes. Switch sides as needed, until the pain is lessened or gone.
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