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Can Osteopathy help neck pain?

I hope to answer some common questions that patients have asked me over my years of being in practice. This blog is going to focus on the question – ‘can Osteopathy help with neck pain?’. Sometimes, neck pain as I’m describing it here is also known as a ‘cricked neck’ or ‘bad neck’. The information provided here describes all of the above.

Neck Pain (a.k.a. non-specific neck pain)

Non-specific neck pain is a common musculoskeletal condition resulting in pain, loss of movement and disability. Most people will notice it after a specific event such as turning their head sharply or at an awkward angle. Some people will find it affects them only when they wake up and some with specific activities.

It’s important to recognise that something which starts as a mild ache or grinding sensation, can develop into something much more severe in later life if adjustments to your spine and/or your working practices and habits are not managed properly.

Our job is to help with your spinal adjustments and offer advice on best practice for your work and home habits. Your job is to listen to and follow our advice relating to pain management. Treatment will only be needed for as long as you and I both agree it is necessary.

How common is it?

Neck pain is the fourth greatest cause of global disability and affects between 30% and 50% of adults per year. It is likely that most adults will experience neck pain at some point in their life. Current NHS guidelines for managing this type of pain includes a combination of exercise, stretching, simple painkillers, and manual therapy, such as Osteopathy.

Common causes to watch out for


There are some common non-pathological causes I see in clinic which are considered ‘non-specific’ neck pain. They tend to be common with full time workers, sitting at computers, working manually (tradesmen) and driving with jobs.

can osteopathy help with neck pain lady sitting at desk with bad neck

Prolonged smartphone/tablet/laptop usage is another common cause.

Regardless of whether or not the recommended ergonomic practices are used, these causes still manage to create pain and stiffness in the neck.

Stress and tension is another cause and there are various ways we can help with this too.


The most common pathological cause would be Osteoarthritis, a form of age related degeneration of the spine. Disc disease is another cause, including the incorrectly known ‘slipped disc’, which is more accurately known as a bulging, protruding or herniated disc.

How can Osteopathy help neck pain?

According to research, Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment is very effective at treating neck pain as well as other types of pain in the body. Osteopathy is not alone, Craniosacral Therapy has also been proven to help reduce neck pain and neck disability.

Here at Baks Osteopathy, we take great care to listen to what you tell us during the initial consultation. This initial conversation helps us to understand what your body has been through up until the point that we see you. Often, people unwittingly cause stresses and strains to their body, commonly they are caused by ‘bad habits’ such as slouching.

Once we have an idea of what is going on in your body, we will assess your body for movement. Sometimes, we do orthopaedic and general medical testing, referring you for medical help/further tests if absolutely necessary.

We use gentle joint manipulation and soft tissue release and relaxation techniques to help you out of pain. The techniques we use work to relax the nervous system which controls our muscles, easing pressure on joints and ligaments. Breaking the cycle of pain is the first step to the root cause of your problem, this provides pain relief.

After treatment, we may advise you of safer working practices, changes to certain habits and even some exercises and stretches. All advice is to be taken as part of the treatment and for best results, you should follow our advice closely.

‘Trapped Nerves’ & ‘Pinched Nerves’

Often we see people coming to see us with what they describe as a ‘trapped nerve’ or a ‘pinched nerve’. The correct term is closer to being an inflamed nerve as this says what actually is causing the problem, Mechanically a nerve is being entrapped, but that’s just academic semantics for you. Anyway….

We can help these people!! Which is the news you wanted to hear isn’t it? Osteopathy is perfect for working in conjunction with certain exercises and medicines. Together, they reduce the swelling around the nerve quicker and will get to the root of the problem. This helps prevent it from happening again.

Book in to see us

If you would like to speak to us about your neck pain, then we have a special offer a free 15 minute discovery call. Sometimes people want pain relief, but are unsure if Osteopathy or Cranial Therapy is right for them. Our free discovery call allows them to find out for free – yep! totally free. You can even book your discovery call online.

Decided that you would like to come in to see us already? Click on the big green button and you’ll go straight to our booking page.

Want to hear about how good we are? Check out our Google reviews below.

Paul Clarke
Paul Clarke
Easy to book, and was pleased to have the option of a bank holiday. In depth examination of medical history etc which provided confidence in the process, and explanations of the issues and remedies for the immediate problem.
Tanya Groves
Tanya Groves
Me and my boyfriend have used Phil for many years now! And wouldn’t go anywhere else. Phil’s a really nice man and an amazing osteopath. I be had appointments from back pain , to not being able to raise my arm, to neck stiffness. 1 appointment I had a bad neck and got an appointment with Phil the next day! With instance results for his work. If you are in need of an osteopath please contact Phil. He will not disappoint and you will want to return.
Brilliant service consultant very good took alot of information and good breakdown of findings, explained clearly of next steps of therapy.
oleg kobka
oleg kobka
after one treatment feel a result, thank you so much...
Baks Osteopathy is an excellent service and highly recommended . Phil is a brilliant osteopath who has really transformed my back pain . I have a desk bound job and have used Baks for acute problems and also general “ maintenance “ top up treatment .
Manu Rai
Manu Rai
Had suffered with excruciating back problem for a long- long time. After my friend recommendation, visited Dr Phil. He has a brilliant skills and experience and knows/ does best for the patient. After couple of visit with Dr Phil, my lingering pain came to ease making my life better and comfortable.
Emma Skinner
Emma Skinner
Contacted Baks Osteopathy due to years of tension and neck pain and stiffness. Was seen very quickly and Phil consulted with me and explained and outlined everything very well. It was my first visit and I left with notably less tension and stiffness in my neck and Phil showed me some exercises I can do at home to help with the overall tension I feel throughout areas of my body. Highly recommended, friendly, thorough, professional service with good results so far.
Jamie Hawkins
Jamie Hawkins
Have used Phil several times since 2020 for continuing maintenance on my lower back and neck/ shoulder pain He is thoroughly professional and helped every time I visited . I have moved from the area now so had to find another in my local area but I’d highly recommend Phil and his services
V Smith-G
V Smith-G
I have had osteo with Philip many times in block sessions for different reasons. This time i just couldn't right my lower back. It took several sessions to release tension and misalignment and then see the crux of the issue, one vertebra facing the wrong way causing compensatory changes further down. Since working on this, my back has been a lot better, not having to think about how i move, no pains and much more flexibility in my spine!
Vine C.
Vine C.
I had a debilitating migraine and couldn’t function - I went to Phil and thanks to his professionalism and skill the pain has eased and I can function again - thank you very much😊I’m smiling again

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