What To Do For Neck Muscle Pain When Swallowing

Muscular neck pain when swallowing is a common symptom after experiencing a traumatic injury to the spine and head. Damaging experiences like a car accident or a workman’s comp injury can leave this vulnerable region of our bodies open to inflammation, strains, sprains, and herniated disc conditions.

When this external damage affects our musculoskeletal system, body functions may become limited due to inflammation, nerve injuries, and other sustained traumas. Depending on the type of health condition causing this kind of pain and difficulty, treatment options could be simple home remedies or more invasive procedures conducted by a New York neck injury doctor.

How Trauma Causes Neck Pain and Affects Swallowing

To better understand how neck pain can directly affect one’s ability to swallow, one needs to learn about the function of our esophagus and trachea. The esophagus is a critical part of our digestion processes and acts as a tube which performs contractions to work food down to our stomachs. The trachea is another pipe that goes from our voice box down to our lungs to deliver air.

Both of these structures are surrounded by neck muscles and tissue and rely on nerves to transmit the commands for swallowing and breathing. Blunt force impacts from car accidents that result in whiplash can affect the ability of these two vital parts of our bodies. Conditions that can make a neck hurt when swallowing includes:

  • Whiplash
  • Muscular strains of the cervical muscles
  • Herniated discs in the neck
  • Taking a direct impact to the neck or throat
  • Pinched nerves
  • Stiffness and inflammation

If you experience more serious symptoms like loss of your voice, overly loud breathing, or an inability to cough effectively, you should visit a New York injury doctor right away for an assessment.

Treatment Options For Neck Pain When Swallowing

Depending on the type of injury you sustained through a workers’ comp accident or traffic collision, treatment plans can vary between traditional at-home remedies to invasive surgical procedures. For those who have minor neck pain while swallowing, their New York pain doctor might suggest some of the following options to try on their own:

  • Interchange the application of heat and/or ice on the affected area of your neck over the course of 7 hours.
  • Use over-the-counter pain medication and anti-inflammatories
  • Rest, but also gently keep your body moving to prevent stiffness from freezing important neck muscle groups
  • Have therapeutic massage formed to work out painful trigger points in your neck
  • Adjust your sleeping position to accommodate your injured neck
  • Practice range-of-motion exercises to strengthen your cervical muscles such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen.

You could also speak with your physician about wearing supportive medical gear to prevent your neck injury from becoming sore throughout your day. This would need to be done in moderation so that your neck muscles do not weaken over time.

If these methods do not help to resolve your neck pain when swallowing, your New York whiplash injury doctor may request that you come in for a further assessment. More invasive medical options like an epidural injection or surgery may be needed if conservative methods don’t ease your discomfort.