How long does a stiff neck last and how does treatment help?

How Long Does a Stiff Neck Last?

Do you wake up with a stiff neck occasionally? Is your neck stiff and painful after working at the office all day? If either of these scenarios sound familiar, you’re not alone. Medical studies report that more than 79% of people experience neck pain annually. 

The time that it takes for your stiffness and pain to go away can vary. Typically, the healing time depends heavily on what’s causing your symptoms in the first place. However, physical therapists can offer treatment that has advantages for people with stiff, painful necks. 

How long could your stiff neck last?

Various issues can cause your neck to become stiff and painful. How long your stiff neck lasts will depend on what issue you’re dealing with. Some issues that can lead to neck pain and stiffness include: 

Poor sleeping posture — Almost everyone has woken up in the morning with a stiff neck. In many cases, the symptoms you feel are directly related to poor sleeping posture. Your head might be too high or low depending on how many pillows you use. In turn, these positions place more strain on the neck, which can leave it stiff and sore. However, your symptoms are likely to go away within a day or two if you’re dealing with this issue. 

Poor head and neck posture — This issue can also lead to neck pain and stiffness. More than 85% of the people observed in one medical study had poor head and neck posture. Often, these postural issues are caused by looking down at a computer screen or cellphone for hours at a time. If left unchanged, poor head and neck posture can lead to neck stiffness and pain that lasts for weeks, months or even years. 

Neck injuries — A neck injury is likely to take the longest to heal. For instance, whiplash is a common cause of chronic neck disability, one study reports. This means that without treatment you could be dealing with its symptoms for years after the original injury.

How can physical therapy treatment help your stiff neck?

Physical therapists can offer a number of benefits thanks to the treatment options they offer. For instance, they can help reduce how long it takes for your neck to heal. Typically, this will involve educating you on the root cause of your neck pain and ways you can fix your posture.

Physical therapy is also effective at helping reduce the pain of many neck issues. One study reveals that a combination of manual therapy and therapeutic exercises is very effective. It reports that after one week of treatment, 75% of the participants had significantly less pain. 

Excel Sports & Physical Therapy is ready to help reduce how long your stiff neck lasts

You don’t have to continue dealing with stiffness and pain in your neck. Our team at Excel Sports & Physical Therapy is ready to help you begin a beneficial therapy program. Our clinics offer complimentary screenings that make it easier to begin your therapy with us. We can also build you a personalized therapy plan that’s intended to reduce pain and recovery time. 

Contact our team today for more information or to schedule a complimentary screening.