can Chiropractic reduce neck pain?
Would stopping your neck pain improve your life?
Neck pain can vary from a mild muscular ache to pain so severe that it interferes with your quality of life. It may start out as mild aching pain, or stiff and tired shoulder muscles that become worse over time, or it may start suddenly and severely.
In many cases your neck pain will resolve itself and no treatment is needed at all to stop or reduce your symptoms. If however, you find you are having repetitive episodes of neck pain that you keep ignoring, or you find yourself relying on painkillers to dull the pain, it may be time to find out what is causing your pain and if a Townsville Chiropractor can help to correct the cause.
What DOES YOU NECK ACTUALLY CONSIST OF?
Your “neck” actually consists of 7 vertebrae between the shoulders and the base of the skull, with discs between them. These vertebrae allow the head to move in many different directions. So when people talk about neck pain it can actually be down to the base of neck, under the skull or out toward the shoulders. All these locations are considered neck pain.
Neck pain is a particularly common problem in our modern age with extended computer usage, poor posture, and a lack of exercise often to blame. In fact, it is the second most common condition that brings people to our clinic.
What Causes Neck Pain?
Some of the more common causes of neck pain include:
Poor Spinal Function: When the vertebral joints in both the neck and back stop working properly, it can affect the discs, nerves and muscles in the neck.
Injuries: Single injuries such as whiplash or repetitive injuries to the neck will often lead to neck pain. The sudden movement of the head (backwards, forwards or sideways) in an accident can create severe neck pain. With whiplash, the pain is usually felt within 24 hours; however, some people continue to have pain for several months or years after the injury1.
Postural Changes: These changes can be brought on by reduced spinal movement, environmental stresses such as prolonged sitting in an office chair, poor work ergonomics or poor muscle tone and strength.
Spinal Degeneration (Arthritis): Trauma and abnormal function that continues for years can cause wear and tear to the vertebrae, joints and discs over time.
Medical Conditions: Uncommon conditions such as tumours, infections, and fractures can also cause neck pain.
What are the Symptoms of Neck Pain?
The most common symptoms associated with neck pain are headaches in both the front and back of the skull, pain on movement, and muscles that spasm or ache.
Pressure on the nerves leaving the neck can also produce radiating pain in the shoulders, arms, wrists and hands.
Can Chiropractic Treatment help Neck Pain?
One of the most common reasons people seek chiropractic care from our clinic is for neck pain. In over 35 years of practice in Townsville we have literally treated thousands of patients suffering from neck pain.
Neck pain is often part of a bigger clinical picture involving your middle and your lower back. Clinically, we find that we get the best results with neck pain when we address the functioning of your whole body and not just the region of pain.
This is why our Townsville chiropractors will look at the functionality of your entire spine, including postural changes and habits as we try to find the true cause of your neck pain.
When you consult us about neck pain we will not start any treatment until we fully understand what is causing your problem. We will discuss which techniques we believe will be the most suitable for you and design an individual plan that best suits you.
One recent study found that the best recommendation for managing neck pain involves spinal adjustments, exercise recommendations and soft tissue work 2. Therefore, your treatment will usually involve specific spinal adjustments, appropriate rehabilitation exercises, and home care advice tailored to your needs . You can find out more about what happens at your first visit here.
1. Mayo Clinic. (2018). Whiplash – Symptoms and causes. [online] Available at: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/whiplash/symptoms-causes/sync-20378921.
2. Bryans R, Decina P, Descarreaux M, Duranleau M, Marcoux H, Potter B, Ruegg RP, Shaw L, Watkin R, White E. Evidence-based guidelines for the chiropractic treatment of adults with neck pain. J Manipulative Physiol Ther. 2014 Jan;37(1):42-63. doi: 10.1016/j.jmpt.2013.08.010