Neck pain: causes, symptoms and treatments

Neck pain - causes, symptoms and treatments

Neck pain is the second most common health complaint which is seen by our chiropractors. Almost two-thirds of people in the world will experience neck pain. No matter the cause, finding effective ways to relieve and manage neck pain can improve the quality of our daily lives.

What causes neck pain?

Neck pain can be caused by a wide range of injuries or conditions.

  • Spending long hours using computers with poor posture can strain neck muscles and lead to pain.
  • The frequent use of phones places all of us at an increased risk of text neck, which is excessive strain on the spine caused by looking down for extended periods of time.
  • As we get older, wear and tear can happen on neck joints, which may cause bone spurs that reduce motion and cause pain.
  • Engaging in sudden movements or overuse, for example from sports, can result in muscle strain of the neck.
  • Stress or anxiety may cause the neck and shoulder muscles to tighten up for long periods of time, and become unable to relax.
  • Injuries such as falling down or whiplash from a motor vehicle accident can cause strains which lead to neck pain.
  • Conditions such as osteoarthritis or herniated discs can result in chronic neck pain.
  • Sleeping with the wrong kinds of pillows or postures can contribute to neck pain.

What are the symptoms of neck pain?

You may be experiencing any of the following complications as a result of neck pain.

  • Stiffness in the neck may make it hard to turn or tilt your head, reducing your maximum range of motion.
  • Pain from the neck may radiate down and cause additional pain in your shoulder, arms, or fingers. This may be a sign of nerve compression.
  • Pain from the neck may radiate upwards and cause tension headaches.
  • If nerves in the neck have been compressed as a result of your neck strain, this can lead to numbness and tingling in your arm.
  • If left untreated, nerve compression may also cause muscle weakness in your arms.
  • Neck spasms are involuntary tightening of strained neck muscles that may cause sharp and sudden pain.
  • If the upper cervical spine is injured, your neck pain may also be accompanied by dizziness or vertigo.
  • The intensity of your neck pain may worsen during specific activities in your day, and affect your ability to engage in them effectively.

When to see a chiropractor for neck pain?

While some cases of neck pain can be managed with self-care, it’s important to know when to get professional help. If your neck pain interferes with daily activities, has persisted for a long time, is accompanied by numbness, weakness, or if it results from a recent injury, then we highly recommend you make an appointment with a medical specialist such as a chiropractor.

How can a chiropractor treat neck pain?

All chiropractors are highly trained professionals with the specialised knowledge which will allow them to effectively diagnose neck pain. The main goal of chiropractic adjustments are to restore proper alignment to the spine, enhancing nerve function, reducing inflammation, and promoting the body’s natural ability to heal. In this way, a chiropractor may be able to treat neck pain without the need for surgery or medication.

When you visit our chiropractor for your neck pain, we will begin by assessing your medical history and perform some physical examinations. We may also use imaging equipment to gather more information about your problem. All of these steps will help our chiropractor gain a full picture of factors contributing to your neck pain, and create an effective treatment plan tailored to you.

Chiropractic adjustment techniques are used to correct misaligned vertebrae in the spine. For neck pain, your chiropractor may perform gentle, controlled adjustments to improve joint mobility, reduce pain, and restore proper alignment. In conjunction with chiropractic adjustments, our massage therapists will be able to bring you the benefits of remedial massage, using techniques such as myofascial release and deep tissue massage to remove muscle tension and relieve your neck pain.

We know every patient is unique, so our chiropractors develop tailored treatment plans that are customised to your needs, while considering your medical history, lifestyle, and personal preferences.

How can neck pain be prevented?

Management of neck pain isn’t limited to hands-on treatment in the clinic. Your chiropractor can also offer valuable advice about good posture and ergonomics which will help you reduce neck pain during daily tasks. In your treatment plan, you may be given exercises or stretches to help strengthen and stabilize the muscles in the neck. This will improve support for the spine and reduce your risk of neck pain in the future.

Especially for those of us who work at a desk or use electronic devices heavily during the day, being equipped with the right knowledge will help us proactively prevent strain on our neck muscles and maintain a healthier spine.

Chiropractic care can provide a natural and holistic solution for people struggling with neck pain, without having to resort to surgery or medication. If you’ve been looking for a solution to your neck pain, the expertise of a chiropractor could be your first step toward a more comfortable and pain-free life. To find out what we can do for you, contact us to request a no obligation pre-consultation today.

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