Welcome and thanks for your question I am Dr. German I would be here to help you and give you assistance until you are satisfied,to begin with , lymph nodes could remain swollen for several days , what doctors usually recommend is for you to consult a doctor when a swollen lymph node does not go down after 2 weeks.
So you should give it one week more ,if after that period of time the lymph node is still sore , enlarged or swollen , You need to contact your doctor for a further medical evaluation.
The four main causes why lymph nodes swell are : underlying infections , autoimmune disorders ( like rheumatoid arthritis or lupus in which the immune cells mistakenly attack your own healthy body's cells ) , white blood cell proliferative disorders or medication side effects .
In the meantime , You could apply warm compresses or pads on the area and take acetaminophen or ibuprofen for the pain if you are not allergic to these medications. There are multiple things that can produce sporadic neck pain from : bad postures, strained muscles, neck herniated disc ( in this condition,the intervertebral disc slips out of its central position ,producing surrounding tissue inflammation and irritation ) , neck vertebrae bone spurs ( which are bony spiky projections ) or nerve root compression .
What you could do to relieve the pain is apply ice pads for 15 -20 minutes , alternate them with warm pads, take a warm bath with epsom salt which you can get over the counter, sleep using a firm mattress,stretch your neck muscles two times per day in the morning and at night before you go to sleep with shoulder and neck rotating movements ,neck tilting ,bending and upper and lower back stretches and bending exercises . You should get supplements that contain calcium,magnesium , vitamin D and Omega-3 fatty acids ,they are really effective to manage neck pain .
There is a natural supplement called Devil's Claw ,it comes in pills or powder very effective in decreasing neck pain ,you could apply menthol or camphor topical gels or creams ( you need to use gloves ) or apply lavender oil to massage your neck.
If you continue experiencing neck pain , contact your primary physician or an Internal Medicine Specialist to have a more extensive medical evaluation.
If you need any additional information I will be happy to continue further and assist you until you are completely satisfied . Good luck to you and have a good day !
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Do you think treatment with antibiotics if it still persists after 2 weeks would be the direction an MD would go? What is the likelihood that this is lymphadenitis? Also is it possible that the sporadic neck pains are associated with lymph nodes as well? I dont feel anything by palpating my neck that would indicate this but is it possible that they're too deep to palpate but if enlarged would they cause pain? the Neck mr I had done didnt show anything that was about 2 weeks ago and not done w contrast.