The goal of treatment is to :

  • relieve pain.
  • prevent permanent spinal cord trauma, nerve root injury.
  • prevention of further degeneration.


In mild cases, no treatment is required, discomfort is minimal and occurs only when triggered by specific movement. Management includes :


  • Exercises to strengthen the neck muscles can be beneficial but should be done only after consulting the doctor. Exercises can be learned from a physiotherapist and can be carried out at home regularly.


  • Restriction of neck movements by a Cervical collar may relieve pain.


  • Neck traction in which a halter-like device is placed on the head and neck, attached to pulley and weights to reduce pain may be advised by the doctor. Neck traction can be done intermittently where as in severe cases it can be recommended daily for 1 to 2 weeks along with bed rest or hospitalization.


  • Surgery can be recommended in severe cases to prevent further progression if there is significant loss of movements, sensation or function and also when there is severe pain or pain is not responding to any treatment.


  • Neck injuries should be avoided.


    • Walk on the smooth surface as any irregular path might cause mild injury to the neck.
    • Avoid driving a car or any other vehicle, as a sudden jerk might trigger the pain or compress the nerves.
    • Swimming is a good exercise but diving from a height can be dangerous.
    • Avoid bending neck for long hours, after every two hours take a 5 minutes break and carry out neck exercise prescribed by the physiotherapist.