Muscle tension and strain are two common causes of neck pain, and understanding how to locate and massage the pressure points in the neck is a great way to alleviate this type of pain. After all, aside from acting as an extension of your spine, your neck spends its day supporting your head – which is quite a bit heavier than you may think.
There are six pressure points in the neck that, when massaged correctly, can offer a great deal of relief from tension, pain, pinched nerves, and other common neck-pain related concerns. Acupressure is not only a safe and natural way to relieve this pain, but it also helps to maintain healthy and functional neck muscles.
Prolonged periods of sitting, less time for exercise, and even sleeping in a poor position can all lead to chronic neck pain. Even though over-the-counter pain relief drugs help alleviate the symptoms, these medications adversely affect other parts of your body, such as your liver, and provide only a temporary reprieve.
The list below provides six pressure points that help eliminate muscle pain and tension much more sustainably.
How To Massage Pressure Points In The Human Neck
Acupressure treatment is both safe and effective, but there are a few key points that you should keep in mind when practicing this kind of physical therapy at home.
- Breath deeply throughout your practice. A major contributor to muscle pain is stress and tense muscles. As you prepare to massage the pressure points in the neck, creating a relaxing and quiet environment is essential.
- Use the right amount of pressure. Applying firm pressure to trigger points during your massage ensures that you properly stimulate each acupressure point correctly. Using a circular or up-and-down motion is best. The neck is a particularly delicate area, so be sure you don’t apply too much pressure.
- Practice regularly. For effective neck pain relief, it is important to repeat this massage practice a few times throughout your day – especially if you notice that it is working. While acupressure for neck pain can provide many great benefits, consistency is key here.
Pressure Points In The Neck
If you are noticing a high current pain intensity, then creating an absence of pain, or at the very least, a decrease in pain is likely your primary goal. Locating and massaging the right trigger point can assist in eliminating various kinds of pain. There are pressure points in the neck for pinched nerves related to shoulder pain, cervical pain, and various other pain patterns. Acupressure can be used on its own or as a complementary treatment.
For Neck Pain
Acupoint: SI-17 (Other Names: Small Intestine-17/Tian Rong/Heavenly Appearance)
Our heads usually weigh between 4 and 6 kilograms. The stiffest section of the body is the neck, which bears the brunt of the weight. Neck discomfort can be relieved with SI-17, which relaxes the muscles on the side of the neck and regulates the disturbance of the autonomic nerves.
Finding this point begins with reaching behind the corners of the mandibular bone and below the ears. The sternocleidomastoid muscle, which extends from under the ear to the nape of the neck, has it on the anterior side. The muscles in your neck will come out, and it will be simpler to discover if you turn your head to the side.
For Tension Headaches
Acupoint: GB-12 (Other Names: Gallbladder-12/Wan Gu/Mastoid Process)
The goal of acupressure for tension headaches is to reduce tension in the neck and shoulder muscles. The GB-12 point is one of the acupressure points for blood circulation in the brain, which helps to relieve the symptoms of tension headaches. Massaging this point in circular motions also helps with neck pain and facial stiffness.
To locate this pressure point, start right below your earlobe and move back towards your neck. It is situated in a depression posterior and inferior to the mastoid process – behind the ear where your head meets your neck.
Acupoint: GB-20 (Other Names: Gallbladder-20/Feng Chi/Wind Pool)
Acupoint: Bl-10 (Other Names: Urinary Bladder-10/Tian Zhu/Celestial Pillar)
If you have a nosebleed, take it slowly, sit on a chair, bend your head slightly, and firmly pinch your nose. If you keep still for 4-5 minutes, most nosebleeds will stop. Stimulate GB-20 and Bl-10 after first aid. Believe it or not, you can use the GB-20 as one of the acupressure points to stay awake. You can find this point on the neck on the outside aspect of the trapezius muscle, below the hollow under the bump at the base of your skull.
Acupressure on GB-20 and Bl-10 on a regular basis can help to enhance your nosebleed-prone constitution. Press each acupoint for 5-6 seconds with the pad of your thumb or index finger, then repeat three times. The BI-10 can also be used as one of the pressure points to increase energy. This location is just lateral to the trapezius muscle tendons, at the junction of the base of the head and the top of the neck.
For Sore Throat
Acupoint: ST-9 (Other Names: Stomach-9/Ren Ying/Man’s Prognosis)
Another one of the most important pressure points in the neck is the ST-9. The common carotid artery pulsates on the anterior boundary of m. sternocleidomastoideus, lateral to the Adam’s apple – this is where you can find the ST-9 pressure point.
Sore throats have many causes related to cold, flu, and allergies. However, if you are a common sufferer of a sore throat, regular pressure and massage applied to this point can help alleviate symptoms and issues related to the throat.
For Cold, Fever, and Headaches
Acupoint: GV-14 (Other Names: The Governing Vessel-14/Da Zhui/Great Vertebra)
Because of its placement on the neck, GV-14 can be used to treat neck discomfort or stiffness, pain along the spine, sore throats, headaches, symptoms related to cold, and it is one of the acupressure points for fever and headache relief.
It is anatomically positioned on the back of the body, in a depression below the spinous process of the 7th cervical vertebrae, near the level of the shoulder. Applying firm pressure to this point throughout the day provides the best results.