How Physical Therapy Helps Neck Stenosis

person with neck pain

Neck Stenosis; Physical Therapy Can Help


Physical therapy is a crucial aspect of healing from a variety relief and aiding patients to recover quickly. It also offers support to help them build strength and flexibility for the future. In this article, we will explore how physical therapy can benefit people who have been diagnosed with neck stenosis. We will discuss the expectations during physical therapy, the types of exercises prescribed, and the recovery duration.

When diagnosed with the condition, you can expect a personalized physical therapy program to be customized by the therapist to meet your specific needs. Exercises that may be prescribed include aerobic, strength, flexibility, posture, and motion of the neck, among others. You can anticipate the recovery period to take time, but it varies depending on the individual’s needs, response to treatment, and the severity of the condition. Physical therapy provides a crucial step to manage neck stenosis and rejuvenate patients’ physical abilities.

What to Expect at Physical Therapy

When visiting a physical therapist for neck stenosis, they will likely perform an evaluation to assess your strength, range of motion, balance, and posture. They may then ask you about any pain or discomfort you are having in order to better understand your condition. Your physical therapist will then create a treatment plan tailored to your needs which may include stretches and exercises designed to decrease pain while improving mobility and promoting healing in the affected area.

Types of Exercises You Might Do

Your physical therapist may assign you certain exercises that are designed to target specific areas of concern related to your neck stenosis diagnosis. Some examples of exercises may include:

  • Neck rolls – Slowly roll your head from side-to-side in order to stretch the muscles in the neck.
  • Shoulder shrugs – Lift your shoulders up towards your ears without arching your back then release them down again. This helps loosen tight muscles in the shoulder area that can contribute to neck pain.
  • Doorway stretch – Stand up straight in front of an open door frame with both arms extended on either side of the door frame forming an “X” shape with your body. Lean forward slightly until you feel a gentle stretch across your chest muscles while keeping both feet planted firmly on the ground. This stretch helps increase flexibility throughout the upper body which can relieve tension headaches associated with neck stenosis.
  • Foam rolling – Use a foam roller or tennis ball placed against the wall or lying on the floor depending on comfort level to apply pressure against tight muscles and knots along either side of the spine which can help alleviate discomfort caused by neck stenosis.

How Long Recovery Takes

The time it takes for recovery depends on several factors including the severity of symptoms, age, health history, medical advice given by the healthcare provider, etc. Generally speaking though most cases tend to improve over time with regular visits to a physical therapist and performing stretches/exercises as prescribed. Depending on progress made at each visit, treatments could last anywhere from two weeks up to six months or longer if necessary.


Physical therapy is proven to be an effective treatment for many conditions – including neck stenosis. With dedication and following your PT’s prescribed stretches/exercises, recovery time can be shorter than expected. Regular PT reinforces healthy habits for future prevention & reduces risk factors for neck pain or other issues related to poor posture or movement patterns.