Over the past three decades I have dealt with thousands of patients that have suffered from whiplash type symptoms to the neck. One of the key issues of neck pain and whiplash associated syndromes is the simple fact that we begin to lose our postural integrity. This leads often to an anterior head carriage or in other words the head drifts forward. The postural ideal from the side is that your ear should be carried over your shoulder. With driving, computers, gaming, mobiles, texting etc. we have a propensity to carry the head forward.
This can lead to a myriad of symptoms including neck pain and headaches as well as degeneration if the imbalance persists. The laws of physics cannot be escaped!
One principle of any rehab of the neck is to restore the normal lordotic curvature.
This can be accomplished by cervical spinal decompression programmes, curve restoration pumps, vertical traction and specific exercises to restore the curve.
A few years back I ordered a cervical support from a medical supply house and what I received was less than overwhelming. It was a cylindrical tube about 12 inches long covered with a white cotton cover. Our wholesale cost with shipping and taxes was around $45. As I looked at it I knew there had to be a simpler or at least more economical solution. Then it struck me.
These cylindrical tubes were very much like what our kids played when swimming. They were approximately the same diameter as a pool noodle. Bam…
You can buy in season a noodle for $2 and cut it up into several supports for the neck exercise.
Lay on a firm surface and place the noodle behind your neck. OK here is the difficult portion of the exercise. Lay there for 20 minutes and do this twice a day if you can.
Now we have all seen cervical pillows with a curve in them to offer support as well. Often these cost up to $125. Here is another solution. Take a piece of the pool noodle and tuck inside the pillow case of a flat pillow and you have an instant cervical support pillow.
The beauty of the noodle is that you can cut it smaller and travel with it to create a pillow at the cottage, in a hotel or visiting friends. Let me know if you have found this information helpful.
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