Neck Pain & Stiffness
Find relief for your neck pain & stiffness w/Crossroads Chiropractic
When is the last time you had that “pain in the neck”? Maybe you have experienced stiffness that leaves it difficult to turn your head or felt a tightness that causes strain.
Our neck, also called the cervical spine, begins at the base of the skull and contains seven small vertebrae. These relatively small bones support the weight of your head, which averages about 12 pounds. While the cervical spine can move your head in nearly every direction, this flexibility also makes the neck very susceptible to various stresses that can cause pain and/or make it susceptible to injury.
Since neck pain can make daily life so difficult, people sometimes revert to the use of pain medication. The ongoing use of pain medication can be dangerous, because pain medication can be highly addictive as well as cause severe stomach and liver problems.
So, what is neck pain? Neck pain is a symptom. It is the body’s way of signaling to us that something is wrong.
The neck’s susceptibility to stress is due, in part, to biomechanics. Activities and events that affect cervical biomechanics and cause stress include: extended sitting, repetitive movement, accidents, falls and trauma to the body or head, normal aging, as well as everyday wear and tear.
Neck pain and stiffness begin with stress. Stress (physical, chemical, emotional), causes pinched nerves (subluxation). Neck pain can result when a pinched nerve has occurred within the the cervical spine. Pinched nerves interfere with the nervous system from communicating properly and can result in several health challenges such as a weakened immune system, sinus issues, hearing and visual problems, dizziness, neck pain and limitations of movement. Nerves emerging from the cervical spine become compressed and the muscles become strained. Symptoms such as pain and stiffness will ultimately result. This pain or lack of mobility is actually your body’s way of trying to keep you from causing more severe damage to your neck.
Typical Types Of Neck Pain:
Injury and Accidents: A sudden forced movement (jerking or jolting) of the head or neck in any direction is known as whiplash. The sudden “whipping” motion injures the surrounding and supporting tissues of the neck and head. Muscles react by tightening and contracting, creating muscle fatigue. The result is pain, stiffness and pinched nerves. Severe whiplash can also be associated with injury to the intervertebral joints, discs, ligaments, muscles, and nerve roots. Car accidents are the most common cause of whiplash. By reducing pinched nerves we often see the healing process accelerated.
(read more on car accidents)
Growing Older: Degenerative disorders such as osteoarthritis, spinal stenosis, and degenerative disc disease directly affect the spine. When a pinched nerve is present, these degenerative processes may advance. By reducing pinched nerves we often slow or halt this degenerative process.
Osteoarthritis: A common joint disorder that causes progressive deterioration of cartilage. The body reacts by forming bone spurs that affect joint motion, causing pinched nerves. By reducing pinched nerves we often slow or halt this degenerative process.
Spinal Stenosis: Causes the small nerve passageways in the vertebrae to narrow, compressing and trapping nerve roots. Stenosis may cause neck, shoulder, and arm pain, as well as numbness resulting in pinched nerves. Pinched nerves do not allow these nerves to function normally. By reducing pinched nerves we often slow or halt this degenerative process.
Degenerative Disc Disease: A disease that can cause reduction in the elasticity and height of intervertebral discs. Over time, a disc may bulge or herniate because of pinched nerves. This can result in tingling, numbness, and pain that runs into the arm. By reducing pinched nerves we often slow or halt this degenerative process.
Daily Life: Poor posture, obesity, and weak abdominal muscles often disrupt spinal balance, causing the neck to bend forward to compensate. Stress and emotional tension can cause muscles to tighten and contract, resulting in pain and stiffness. Postural stress cause pinched nerves and contributes to chronic neck pain with symptoms extending into the upper back and the arms. Reducing pinched nerves can often help improve the quality of life.
Torticollis: Also called wryneck, loxia, or a “crick in the neck”. Torticollis is a dystonic condition defined by an abnormal, asymmetrical head or neck position, which may be due to a variety of causes. The term torticollis is derived from the Latin words tortus for twisted and collum for neck. The many causes of torticollis will most likely result in pinched nerves. Reducing pinched nerves can often help relieve the torticollis and allow normal function to return. Read more here.
Do I need x-rays
A: In many cases x-rays give important information when evaluating the condition of your spine and any possible degenerative processes of your discs. At Crossroads Chiropractic we offer state of the art digital x-rays to provide us with the best quality films to best evaluate your condition and determine the appropriate care plan.
Do you see a lot of people with neck pain?
A: Yes, most people will experience neck pain and stiffness at some point in their lives, Thus, a large segment of our patients initially come in because of neck pain.
How long will it take for me to get better?
A: Depending upon your specific findings, relief care will vary from a few weeks to a few months.
At Crossroads Chiropractic, we will do a thorough evaluation including a sophisticated digital analysis (computerized diagnostic scans) to determine where the stresses in your life have caused the pinched nerves that are causing you pain and/or stiffness and address them properly.
When I came to Crossroads Chiropractic, I was in physical pain. I was unable to turn my neck without piercing pain. On that second visit, they were able to show me that I was not only storing stress in my neck, but many other areas along my spine. These subluxations were interfering with my health. After a few more visits, I was able to move my neck without pain.
Dianne D., Peachtree City, GA