Lump on the Back of Neck: Causes and Home Remedies

Lump on the back of the neck

Differing from person to person, the experience of feeling a bump grow on the back of your neck can be frightening. A lump on the back of neck can be cancerous or painless, but our inability to see it clearly keeps us on the tenterhooks on finding a cure.

The cure for that lump on the back of neck is determined by the factors that caused the lump, its appearance, and location.

Some people might inherit these lumps from faulty genes, while others may develop it due to lifestyle choices and other uncontrollable factors.


Lump on the Back of Neck: Common Causes

Identifying what causes the lumps on back of neck is vital to effective treatment as early detection and proper diagnosis play an instrumental role.

Lump on the back of the neck

Based on their causes, the lumps on back of neck can be distinguished as follows:

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1. Infections

Majority of these knots on back of neck are caused by bacterial and viral infections. These bumps on the back of neck are developed by common infections such as measles or conditions such as strep throat.

2. Cancer

Cancer can cause lumps as well. The condition of these lumps should not go unchecked. They occur in patients with leukemia, tissue cancer, Hodgkin’s lymphoma and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

Patients over the age of 40 are more likely to develop cancerous lumps. They are irregularly shaped and fixed under deep skin tissues.

3. Hernias, Nodules, and Aneurysms

Hernias, nodules, and aneurysms can lead to bulging sections under the skin in the neck region.

An inguinal hernia, aneurysm and thyroid nodules can cause abnormal growth of tissues, which impede the functioning of blood vessels and cause the medical emergency.

A benign growth of tissues or tumors such as lipoma and cystic lesions are malignant in nature. Tonsillitis is also a key cause of lumps at the back of our necks.

4. Other Causes

Other causes of the lumps include:

  • Side effect of consuming medicines (commonly caused by phenytoin)
  • Medical conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis
  • Physical injury to muscles
  • Allergic reaction to foods
  • Abnormal functionally of the salivary glands

Related Reading: Lump in the Throat (Globus Sensation): Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment


Where is the Lump Located?

Lump on the back of the neck location

To diagnose the lump effectively, doctors assess the location and appearance of the lump. Some lumps are large and cover a large region of the back of neck, while small lumps are tender and barely noticeable.

A lump near the hairline is generally a lipoma – fat deposit under the skin surface. This lump is painful but can be painless at times.

Lipoma grows slowly, moves around the region, is pale or colorless, and feels soft. It rarely occurs in infants and is easily treatable.

On the right side, the lump occurring at the bottom of our skull is a cause of concern as it can be a lipoma or a sebaceous cyst. Sometimes, these lumps can become cancerous.

On the left side, swollen lymph nodes occur commonly.

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These lumps are caused by the enlarged salivary gland, tonsillitis or allergic reactions to drugs & medicines. Bacterial infections can also cause lumps on the left side of the back of neck.

Lumps under the skin are usually caused by injuries or infections. The swelling and itching of the skin characterize its location. These lumps are not worrisome.

The most critical location of the lump is a large bump on the back of neck. This bump and its largeness clearly indicate a tumor or malignant nature.

This lump is painless and eventually grows to become a hard mass.

Soft and hard lumps on the back of our neck are either caused by abnormal growth of fatty tissues. These cysts become hard and are non-cancerous, treated by lasers or surgery.


5 Home Remedies for That Lump on the Back of Your Neck

A lump on the back of neck is most likely to go unnoticed. The discomfort in normal neck movement is what prompts us in finding the remedy for such lumps.

There are several medical treatments and surgical procedures to remove the lumps.

One can go for laser treatments if the high costs aren’t a barrier, but this option leaves the skin irritated and scarred, and cures the lump temporarily.

Surgical removal of these lumps is also feasible, both medically and economically. Invasive techniques can remove the lump and restrict its re-growth in the future.

The only downside to such procedures is that their intervention can also injure nerves, muscle or tendons near the lump area.

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Home remedies, on the other hand, are more effective and practically quite affordable to treat lumps on the back of the neck.

The therapeutic science on how to treat these lumps on the back of neck revolves around the type of health conditions of the person and the severity of the lump.

Location and appearance of the lump are vital signs for a doctor to determine the cause as well as a remedy. Treatment of these lumps is closely associated with the treatment of the underlying muscle, organs, tissues, and arteries.

Let’s take a look at some of the home remedies for treating those lumps on the back of our necks:

1. Warm Compressors

To stop the swelling of the lump, the heat from a cloth soaked in hot water can boost the blood circulation in that region.

Take a clean cloth, soak it in hot water and remove the excess water. Place it on the affected area for nearly 10 minutes and allow the blood flow in that region to accelerate. This remedy can be repeated till the swelling recedes.

2. Lemon and Honey

Being a rich source of antioxidants, lemon takes a central part in a remedy designed to treat these lumps and makes the healing process faster.

A teaspoon of honey mixed with lemon juice and water should be consumed in the morning and before going to sleep.

You can combine honey and hot tea to get faster results. Honey mixed in lukewarm water can be applied to the lump area to reduce the swelling.

3. Turmeric Powder

Therapeutic properties of this herb can be used to lower the inflammation in the infected area. A tablespoon of turmeric powder mixed with honey can be applied as a paste on the lump.

The antibacterial and anti-inflammatory agents inside this paste can combat the swelling. You can rinse this paste and repeat the method till you obtain satisfactory results.

4. A Calculated Intake of Calcium and Vitamin D

It has been observed that people suffering from osteoporosis-related lumps on the back of their necks have shown improved results after having a recommended daily intake of vitamin D and calcium.

This remedy is also a preventive measure to avoid neck lumps for osteoporosis patients.

5. Regular Exercise and Diet Control

The chances of getting lumps on the neck are largely associated with the risks of obesity and lessening bones. Exercising regularly will keep you away from having weak bones and obese body.

As a result, this will also serve as a remedy to the existing lumps on the back of the neck. Maintaining a healthy diet is also a great home remedy to treat lumps on the back of neck.

Antibiotics can also be used at home to treat lumps on the back of neck. After assessing the location and appearance of lumps, one can determine if the lumps are caused by bacterial infections.

Treating such lumps with antibiotics is highly effective, and can be carried out in the comfort of our homes.

Several home remedies for treating lumps on the back of neck are observed to be preventive measures.

From gargling salt water to applying a solution of apple cider and vinegar, the list of home remedies for treating these lumps keeps extending.

Castor oil, peppermint oil, and coconut oil are also used to create mixtures of lemon and honey. Home remedies also include the use of tea bags, nutmeg, aloe vera, mint, and garlic.

The effectiveness and healing properties of these remedies depend on early detection and cause of the lumps.

That’s why; these knots on the back of neck should not be ignored, particularly when there is a chance that they can lead to cancerous situations.

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Sources:
Dwivedi Raghav C, Masterson Liam, Alam Mostayn, Jani Piyush. An adult with a neck lump; https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.f5473
Roland Nick, Bradley Patrick J.. Neck Swellings; https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.g1078
Tara L., Rosenberg MD, Jimmy J.Brown MD, DDS, Gina D.Jefferson MD; Evaluating the Adult Patient with a Neck Mass, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.mcna.2010.05.007

Dr. David Cummings, MD

Dr. David Cummings, MD

David Cummings, MD, is a medical reviewer and editor at Daily Health Cures. David received his medical degree from the University of Illinois.