Chiropractic Care and Neck Pain
Most of us will experience neck pain at some point. Often it's a short-term problem that you can treat at home. But sometimes it's more problematic and you need a skilled therapist to help with your posture, strengthen your muscles, and relieve the pressure on your neck.
What Are the Symptoms of Neck Pain?
If you're struggling with neck pain, you might notice that:
It gets worse if you keep your head in one position for a long time (e.g. working at your desk or driving)
It's hard to turn your head from side to side
Your muscles feel tight
You've got a dull, aching headache that gets worse when you move your neck
After an injury, you may notice more serious neck pain symptoms including dizziness, numbness, altered hearing or vision, difficulties concentrating or swallowing, weakness, and pins and needles. You should always see your doctor if you have any of these symptoms.
What Causes Neck Pain?
Neck pain has several possible causes, which is why it’s important that you’re properly examined.
Neck pain usually traces back to a problem with your muscles, joints or nerves.
Your muscles will understandably complain if they’re overused. In your neck’s case, that tends to happen when you spend too long in the same position, whether that’s hunched over your computer, looking down at your phone, looking up to paint a ceiling or sleeping with a poor pillow.
Wear and tear on your neck joints can also cause pain. You have 7 bones in your neck, known as your cervical spine. It’s a comparatively small column to support the weight of your head and, over time, your neck joints may become stiff and sore. Neck arthritis is very common, affecting more than 85% of people over 60, according to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons.
A pair of spinal nerves threads through each of your vertebrae, passing through the joint to your muscles, skin and tissues. It’s these nerves that enable you to move and feel sensations. Sometimes, your cervical spine can change and begin to pinch your nerves, resulting in neck pain. This is known as cervical stenosis and is most commonly due to ageing.
Injuries like whiplash or conditions like meningitis and cancer can also cause neck pain.
What Does Neck Pain Feel Like?
Neck pain can be mild or severe. Depends on the underlying cause you may feel:
Hard, tender knots (trigger points) in your neck muscles
A sudden, powerful tightening (spasm) of your neck muscles
A deep ache in your neck joints
A stiff neck
A dull, aching headache
Pins and needles or shooting pains.
Who Gets Neck Pain?
Around 70% of us at some point! You might get neck pain if you:
Have to keep your neck in the same position for a long time
Tend to hunch or slouch, meaning your neck is in an awkward position
Have been in a rear-end car accident that caused whiplash
Are getting older and therefore more at risk of neck arthritis and nerve-related neck pain
Have an underlying medical condition that causes neck pain.
What Can I Do To Prevent Neck Pain
While you can’t prevent neck pain that’s caused by age-related wear and tear, you can reduce the risk of muscle-related neck pain.
The aim is to keep your head centred over your spine so that your neck can support it without straining.
To do, that try:
Checking and correcting your posture several times per day so that your ears, shoulders and hips align
Taking frequent breaks to shift your position and stretch
Improve your pillow or sleeping position (lying on your back with cushions under your thighs may help)
Using a headset for phone calls or holding the phone to your ear rather than bending your neck to hold it between your ear and shoulder
Adjusting your workstation so your computer screen is at eye level.
How Do You Treat Neck Pain?
Again, the right treatment for neck pain depends on the underlying cause.
You could try:
Chiropractic spinal care
Exercises to correct your posture, improve your alignment and strengthen your neck
Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) to relieve pain by delivering tiny electrical impulses to the sore area
Traction to gently stretch your neck
Care Plan for Neck Pain at Hope Health
At Hope Health, we start by reviewing your medical history and examining you careful to assess your neck pain. We’ll also look at any treatment plan or advice your doctor may have prepared.
Chiropractic care is a natural form of treatment that unblocks nerve signals travelling between your brain and your body. Chiropractic uses gentle adjustments to treat your bones, joints, muscles and ligaments.
If you’re tired of living with neck pain, please make an appointment with us. We’d love to help.
BOOK AN APPOINTMENT
28 Grandview Ave
Wagga Wagga NSW, 2650
Fax: (02) 6925 0800
Monday 2.00pm - 6.00pm
Tuesday 8.00am - 6.00pm
Wednesday 8.00am - 6.00pm
Thursday 8.00am - 5.00pm
Friday 8.00am - 11.00am