Neck pain is the second most common injury seen by physical therapists only to low back pain. I wanted to write a quick blog post about neck pain since I just finished up with a patient who has been dealing with neck pain for months.
While there is a lot that goes into neck pain, I wanted to directly address the upper traps because they affect SO MANY PEOPLE. The upper Trapezius muscle sits on top of the shoulders between the neck and the deltoids. It is the muscles we use to shrug our shoulders when we say, “I don’t know!” Besides being really good at shrugging shoulders, the traps are excellent at storing stress. So many people who are stressed out for one reason or another keep their shoulders in a constant state of, “I don’t know,” which leads to neck and shoulder pain.
There are some good stretches out there for shoulder pain relief. All you need to do is look up “Upper Trapezius Stretch” on Google and you will have your answer. For some people this stretch works great. For others, not so much.
One of the best ways that I have found to treat neck and upper Trapezius pain is with trigger point dry needling. By putting the needle in the middle of the painful muscle, the inflammation found in the muscle has an exit route. This in turn allows the muscles to relax and not hurt from being in a constant state of tension.
If you have pain in your upper shoulders, you would definitely benefit from dry needling. It is a safe and extremely effective means to getting rid of neck pain quickly.