Common causes of neck pain and how to manage their symptoms

What is neck pain?

The vertebrae within your neck run from the base of the skull towards the end of your torso. The cervical discs serve as shock absorbers between the bones of the neck.

Your neck’s spine bones, ligaments, and muscles support your head and allow it to move. Neck discomfort or stiffness might be caused either by irregularities, inflammation, or injury affecting any one of these structures.

Many people suffer from neck discomfort or stiffness regularly. For the most part, neck pain is not a major problem, though some patients have severe debilitating pain that can interfere with their activities of daily living. 

Neck pain can sometimes indicate a serious injury or medical condition sickness that necessitates medical attention. If you are looking for a neck pain treatment in Dubai, Dr Sherief will be more than happy to see you and assess you.  

Causes of neck pain

Neck stiffness or pain can occur for a variety of reasons.

Most neck pain is caused by simple wear and tear – degeneration of the discs or joints within the spine. This may be referred to as arthritis, osteoarthritis or cervical spondylosis, amongst othr terms. 

Tension and strain in the muscles due to poor posture

Working at a desk for an extended period without shifting positions. Similarly, when you sleep with your neck in an awkward position, you may experience neck pain or discomfort.

Neck injury

The neck is particularly prone to damage, especially when the muscles and ligaments of the neck are forced to move outside of their typical range, as they do in falls, vehicle accidents, and jerking your neck during physical activity.

Heart attack

Neck discomfort can be a symptom of a heart attack, although it frequently occurs in conjunction with other heart attack symptoms, such as:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Sweating
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Arm or jaw pain

If your neck hurts and you’re experiencing other heart attack symptoms, contact an ambulance or go to the nearest emergency room right away.


Meningitis is a condition in which the thin tissue that surrounds the brain and spinal cord become inflamed. Fever and headache are common symptoms of meningitis, as is a stiff neck. Meningitis is a medical issue that can be lethal.

If you develop signs of meningitis, seek medical attention immediately. 

Other Causes Of Neck Pain:

Rheumatoid Arthritis: Arthritis causes joint swelling, bone spurs, and discomfort. Neck discomfort can develop when issues occur in the neck area. Fortunately with newer biological treatments for rheumatoid arthritis, significant neck deformities due to rheumatoid arthritis are largely a thing of the past. 

Osteoporosis: reduced bone density, otherwise known as osteoporosis, is not a condition that is typically painful – unless it leads to fracture. 

Fibromyalgia: a condition that causes muscle pain throughout the body, specifically in the shoulders and neck.

How can you ease neck pain at home?

If you are suffering from minor neck discomfort or stiffness, use these simple techniques to get some relief:

  • For the first few days, use ice. Then, apply heat using a heating pad, a hot compress, or a hot shower.
  • Take over-the-counter pain medications such as ibuprofen or paracetamol (if no allergies).
  • Take a few days off from sports, aggravated-symptom activities, and hard lifting. Slowly return to normal activity as your symptoms subside.
  • Every day, stretch your neck. Stretch your head slowly from side to side and up and down.
  • Maintain a decent posture.
  • Avoid cradling your phone between your shoulder and neck.
  • Frequently shift your position. Do not remain in one position for an extended period.

If you are having trouble managing your neck pain, get in touch with Dr. Sherief Elasyed, one of the most reputed neck pain doctors in Dubai.