Any pain in the joints can make a person feel miserable, but in the neck, which has to support the head (not a lightweight item by any means), this form of pain can seem to be twice as painful. There are a number of causes of neck pain, the most common being the neck becoming locked in an uncomfortable position when the individual is asleep. Bad posture is another common cause of pain in the neck and, as people spend longer at their desks working on computers, this form of neck pain is on the increase.
Trapped or pinched nerves may be a factor, as well as injuries such as whiplash, caused by falls or car accidents. Fortunately, there are several treatments available, once diagnosed by a qualified chiropractor, that will relieve the pain and allow the patient to carry on effectively managing their neck pain in the comfort of their own homes.
Common Symptoms Of Neck Pain
Difficulty turning the head from side to side and a soreness is the sign of a stiff neck and one of the more common symptoms. Sharp pains, often located in the lower area of the neck, can be localised in one area and the pain may feel like a stabbing sensation. A burning pain radiating from a nerve from the neck can be felt in the shoulders and arms and the intensity of the searing or burning sensation can vary. Headaches may be another symptom often linked with muscles and nerves that are connected to the head. Sometimes, a tingling sensation like pins and needles can be felt further down the shoulders or arms but linked to nerves in the neck. It is important to visit a chiropractor in order to find out the causes of these symptoms and to begin to treat them.
Establishing The Specific Problem
As outlined above, neck pain can be attributed to skeletal, muscular or neurological problems and there is a need to get the correct diagnosis. Chiropractic care include a range of techniques to establish what the problem is, from neurothermal scanning and physical examination, to finding out more about the individual’s lifestyle and exercise regime. There could be factors such as incorrect posture or using a workstation that is not ergonomically designed to suit the individual, that may cause neck pain. Reviewing the health of a patient can identify a previous car accident which caused whiplash for example, and the chiropractor can determine the proper treatment to restore balance to the neck and spinal area, alleviating the pain symptoms.
Post Treatment Management
The chiropractor will also identify some simple and effective pain management techniques that can be carried out at home. One of the most important tips is to ensure that the individual drinks plenty of water. The spine is made up of a number of bony vertebrae that are cushioned from each other by discs which are made up of about 80% water. This ratio starts to decrease the older a person gets, and the disc begins to degenerate. Keeping the body hydrated may prevent any further degeneration of these discs, thus helping to reduce neck pain.
Get Into The Pool
Water therapy which is a gentle exercise carried out in a warm swimming pool, is less strenuous on the body and a good alternative to land-based exercises. Being in the pool up to the shoulder and neck line supports the head and even gentle swimming can give relief by easing the stiffness in the neck. The chiropractor will advise what techniques and exercises will be beneficial for the type of neck injury sustained.
Increase Magnesium In The Diet
When muscle strains or sprains are the cause of neck pain, making sure that the diet includes magnesium which helps in the relaxation and contraction of muscles, will be beneficial. Include plenty of fruits, soy products, beans, vegetables and whole grains in order to ensure the recommended daily dose of magnesium is taken.
Invest In A Proper Pillow And Neck Supporting Chairs
There are neck pillows on the market, and these have to be tried and tested by the individual to ensure the correct sleeping position. Water pillows are also available, which allow the patient to adjust the hard and softness of the pillow, by adding or taking away the water contained. When aiming to maintain good posture, investing in a proper office chair with a neck rest will help keep the spine in a neutral position. Make sure that a neck rest is used in the car as well and in the recliner at home if sitting down.
Gentle Stretching Techniques
When working at the computer make sure the monitor is at the correct height and sit up straight to avoid keeping the neck bent forward for long periods of time. While sitting at a desk or in the car, do some gentle stretching. Roll the shoulders backwards and down ten times. Then squeeze the shoulder blades together 10 times and push the head back on the head rest or hands and hold this position for 30 seconds. Finish by bringing the ear to the shoulder ten times on both sides.
For all these techniques, ensure that they have been discussed and agreed with the chiropractor in order to effectively manage neck pain at home. Our chiropractors at Adaptive Chiropractic Melbourne CBD has helped health-conscious individuals to relieve pain and access optimal wellbeing for more than 7 years.
Book an appointment with a chiropractor today!