Wry Neck

Have you ever woken up in the morning with a stiff, sore neck with no apparent cause? You’re not alone, with approximately 70% of people will experience an episode of neck pain at some point in their lives.

Signs and Symptoms of Wry Neck

Acute wry neck is when the muscles that control your neck movement become suddenly “locked up”, causing severe neck pain, twisting and restricted movement down one side of the neck.  You will find an inability to turn your head without experiencing excruciating pain.  With often no direct cause for the onset, the reasons you may develop acute wry neck are debatable. It can arise from simply sleeping in the wrong position, an uncomfortable pillow, or sudden fast movements of the neck.  It is also suggested that the facet joints of the spinal vertebrae become ‘locked’ or ‘jammed’ causing muscle spasms and painful movements.


If you think you have wry neck it is best to seek treatment within the first 12 hours of onset where our Physiotherapist can establish a diagnosis following thorough examination.  At Trained Physio & Fitness we have successfully treated hundreds of patients diagnosed with acute wry neck.  The condition can be very debilitating, however with the right treatment plan from your physiotherapist this can actually be a very quick fix.

Treatment Through Physiotherapy

In most cases an onset of acute wry neck can be effectively treated with physiotherapy intervention. It is ideal to get a same day appointment to speed up recovery time, with symptoms usually resolving within 3-7 days.

Successful treatment usually involves the following:

  1. Massage
  2. Gentle cervical joint mobilisations
  3. Gentle active range of movement exercises

Ready to See a Physiotherapist

Advice for self management is to stay active until you can BOOK AN APPOINTMENT with a Physiotherapist.  Carry on with your day to day activities (within your pain limitations) Try and keep your neck moving and take pain relief if required.  Although being a painful diagnosis, the upside is that wry neck is easily resolved with early intervention.  Trained Physio & Fitness has a special interest in diagnosing and recovering patients from acute wry neck in Perth.

The neck plays a pivotal role in the movement of our body, and when that movement is taken away it significantly affects our lives.  Book an appointment TODAY and find out how we can help you feel your best.