Dealing with a cervical disc bulge can be an uncomfortable experience, impacting your daily activities and quality of life. However, there’s good news – targeted exercises can play a pivotal role in managing your condition and alleviating discomfort. In this blog, we’ll explore seven essential exercises designed to strengthen and mobilize your cervical spine, drawing on the insights from published papers and medical journals.
- Chin Tucks : Realign and Strengthen
Chin tucks are a foundational exercise for cervical disc bulge relief. Start by sitting or standing with good posture. Gently retract your chin, like you’re creating a double chin. Hold for a few seconds and release. This exercise helps in realigning your cervical spine and strengthening the muscles that support it.
- Neck Retractions : Nurturing Mobility
Similar to chin tucks, neck retractions involve gently sliding your head backward while keeping your chin tucked. This movement encourages cervical spine mobility and helps prevent stiffness that often accompanies a disc bulge.
- Cervical Isometrics : Building Stability
Isometric exercises involve contracting muscles without movement. For cervical disc bulge relief, place your hand on your forehead and gently push against it while simultaneously resisting with your neck muscles. This builds stability and strengthens your neck muscles.
- Shoulder Blade Squeezes : Improving Posture
Strong upper back muscles contribute to better cervical spine support. To perform shoulder blade squeezes, sit or stand with your arms by your sides. Gently squeeze your shoulder blades together, holding the position for a few seconds. This exercise promotes better posture, reducing strain on the cervical discs
- Gentle Neck Stretches : Easing Tension
Incorporate gentle neck stretches to ease tension and improve flexibility. Slowly tilt your head to the side, aiming your ear toward your shoulder. Hold the stretch for 15-30 seconds and repeat on the other side. These stretches can help alleviate discomfort and improve overall neck mobility
- Eccentric Exercises : Controlled Movement
Eccentric exercises involve lengthening muscles while under tension. Gently press your hand against your forehead while resisting with your neck muscles. As your hand gradually wins the resistance battle, your neck muscles will lengthen under control. This technique aids in building strength and improving muscle control
- Modalities for Relief : Heat and Cold Therapy
In addition to exercises, modalities like heat and cold therapy can provide relief from cervical disc bulge symptoms. Applying a heat pack or cold compress can help soothe inflamed tissues and alleviate discomfort.
AT ALLEVIATE we use a multifaceted treatment approach with the focus of combining image guided cervical injections(cervical epidural,cervical facet joint injection , cervical prolotherapy) and a physical therapy programme blending the aforementioned excercises. Remember, it’s essential to consult your healthcare provider before starting any exercise regimen, especially if you have an existing medical condition. These exercises can serve as valuable tools in managing cervical disc bulge discomfort, but an individualized approach is key to achieving the best results. Incorporate these exercises under professional guidance, and empower yourself with knowledge to take charge of your cervical health.
- J Orthop Sports Phys Ther 2021;51(1):CSM57–CSM165. doi:10.2519/jospt.2021.51.1.CSM57
- Lee MY, Jeon H, Choi JS, Park Y, Ryu JS. Efficacy of Modified Cervical and Shoulder Retraction Exercise in Patients With Loss of Cervical Lordosis and Neck Pain. Ann Rehabil Med. 2020 Jun;44(3):210-217. doi: 10.5535/arm.19117. Epub 2020 May 29. PMID: 32475094; PMCID: PMC7349041.
- Sadeghi A, Rostami M, Ameri S, Karimi Moghaddam A, Karimi Moghaddam Z, Zeraatchi A. Effectiveness of isometric exercises on disability and pain of cervical spondylosis: a randomized controlled trial. BMC Sports Sci Med Rehabil. 2022 Jun 16;14(1):108. doi: 10.1186/s13102-022-00500-7. PMID: 35710510; PMCID: PMC9205102.