Cervical collars are typically meant for short-term use – while recovering from an injury, trauma, or pain. Though there are a plethora of conditions that can be named where a cervical collar is prescribed, here are the common cases whence they are used…

Cervical spondylosis – This a disease caused by age or stress. The wear and tear of bones and cartilage in the neck lead to cervical spondylosis which in turn causes sharp pain!

Neck surgery – Post-surgery, one needs a limitation of movements. Back and forth or side-to-side movements might prove to be fatal after neck surgery! Cervical collars are therefore prescribed for a given period. 

Stiffness and pain – Strained muscles are highly relieved with the help of a cervical collar.

Cervical Collar Types

The 2 primary variants of cervical collars

The softer cervical collars

The softer variant fits snugly around the neck and sits more below the jaw. Made from softer fabrics like felt, foam, or rubber, soft cervical collars are usually prescribed for shorter durations and milder injuries. 

The hard cervical collars

The harder variants are made from materials like plastic or plexiglass. They are usually advised in the face of severe neck pain, trauma, or fracture in the spine! They strictly restrict head movements – side-to-side or back-and-forth!



Can I sleep with a cervical collar?

Yes, you can. You only need to follow a few steps to sleep comfily with a cervical collar. Check these…

How to sleep with a Cervical Collar?

  1. The mattress or pillow should not be too soft such that it provides the adequate support that’s needed.
  2. The neck needs to be in a neutral position – neither a bit forward nor backward and not a little tilted either.
  3. While moving out of bed, first you need to gently roll on to your side, extend your legs across the rim of the bed and pull yourself out of the bed with extended arms. 

Can I bathe with a cervical collar?

Keeping your cervical collar dry is essential. Bathing is therefore easier than taking a shower. Even a hand-held shower nozzle would allow you to keep the collar safe from getting drenched! While bathing, it's advisable that you wrap plastic around the collar before bathing!

How long can I wear my cervical collar?

The physician's advice, in this case, is crucial. That’s because wearing your cervical collar for longer periods than required could render muscle stiffness, weakness, and immobility to your neck. Usually, in case of sudden trauma, your health caregiver might advise you to put on the collar for even a few weeks. Mild to moderate neck injuries are prescribed cervical collars for not more than a week.

How do I clean my cervical collar?

Cleaning cervical collars are essential so that there's no amount of skin irritation, rashes, and other skin issues from the accumulated dirt and germs in your collar. Cleaning involves washing with mild detergent or soap and warm water. Collar pads are replaceable. After long use, collar pads may be replaced, before you are planning to cleanse the front and the back panels.

Cervical Collar for Neck Pain

Are all neck pains treated with a cervical collar? 

Patients going in for a cervical collar have this one question in mind – is this the only treatment model? Is a collar needed to treat any sort of neck pain? 


In whiplash patients, trauma or injury cases, cervical radiculopathy cases, etc. collars are often prescribed. However, there is a grey area in the use of cervical collars. This is because although cervical collars sound like a benign intervention, they often have adverse impacts. Longer and longer periods of immobilization often result in muscle atrophy issues. A soft cervical collar is often used as an alternative to hard collars!