Neck pain is one of the most common complaints we hear. Whether it’s a result of hunching over a computer all day or caused by an accident or injury, neck pain can be a serious problem. Pain can reside in the neck itself or can extend to the shoulders and down to the middle back.
Most neck pain is associated with poor posture combined with age-related wear and tear. Physical therapy helps alleviate neck pain and symptoms by providing proper exercises and valuable prevention education to reduce the causes of tissue strain. Our physical therapists help strengthen stability muscles and restore tissue so that you can live a pain-free life.
Rarely, neck pain can be a symptom of a more severe problem. Seek immediate medical care if your neck pain is accompanied by numbness or loss of strength in your arms or hands or if you experience shooting pain in your shoulder or down your arm.
- Pain in the neck, upper back, shoulders, arms, or hands
- Numbness or tingling in the neck, shoulders, arms, or hands
- Weakness in the arms
- Increased pain when coughing, sneezing, reaching, or sitting
- Inability to stand straight or sit up straight
- Stiffness when trying to move, or a feeling of being “stuck” in a position such as stooped forward, or with the head leaning to the side
- Tight muscles
- Inability to remain in one position for a long period of time, such as sitting or standing, due to pain
- Pain that is worse in the morning or at night
- Difficulty sleeping due to pain
Your neck is flexible and supports the weight of your head, so it can be vulnerable to injuries and conditions that cause pain and restrict motion. Neck pain causes include:
- Muscle strains. Overuse, such as too many hours hunched over your computer or smartphone, often triggers muscle strains. Even minor things, such as reading in bed or gritting your teeth, can strain neck muscles.
- Worn joints. Just like the other joints in your body, your neck joints tend to wear down with age. Osteoarthritis causes the cushions (cartilage) between your bones (vertebrae) to deteriorate. Your body then forms bone spurs that affect joint motion and cause pain.
- Nerve compression. Herniated disks or bone spurs in the vertebrae of your neck can press on the nerves branching out from the spinal cord.
- Rear-end auto collisions often result in a whiplash injury, which occurs when the head is jerked backward and then forward, straining the soft tissues of the neck.
- Diseases. Certain diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis, meningitis or cancer, can cause neck pain.
Neck Injuries We Treat
- Muscle strain
- Neck strain
- Whiplash-Associated Disorders (WAD)
- Herniated Disc
- Neck fractures
- Spinal Cord Injury
- Spinal Stenosis
Knowing what to do about your neck pain is the first step to getting better. Book your physical therapy appointment today! No referral required. As your trusted health resource, we look forward to speaking with you! Call us today at 841.0150 or a PT evaluation.