When Should You Be Worried About Neck Pain?

Neck Pain

About 80% of people are affected by neck pain in their lives. Neck pain can increase discomfort, reduced range of motion, stiffness and muscle spans, and headaches. If the pain persists despite self-care techniques such as icing, heating packs, rest, and stretching, it is advisable to consult a medical specialist. In Woodbury, neck pain can be treated by several methods, chosen based on the nature of your diagnosis, healthcare provider, and best results. 

Chronic neck pain can severely impact the quality of life of an individual. It makes it difficult to perform simple tasks and causes extreme pain. A physical examination to test your neck’s functioning and pain level along with tests such as MRI, CTs, X-Rays, and EMGs to obtain a good view of your neck and understand the cause of pain. 

Common causes

Muscle strain: 

Staying in a position for extended periods, such as being hunched over your desk, can strain your neck and back muscles. Maintaining lousy posture such as slouching can cause problems for your neck. Falling asleep with a wrong neck position can lead to additional discomfort and stiffness. 

Arthritis:

When the cartilage between your bones gets worn down, your joints might experience inflammation and pain. Degeneration of the joints in your neck can cause cervical spondylosis. Some symptoms include muscle spasms, headaches, hearing popping sounds when you move your head, loss of balance, and weakness. 

Meningitis:

The meninges are layers that protect the brain and spine, ensure proper blood flow, and help transport cerebrospinal fluid. They run through the neck, and inflammation of these layers can result in discomfort in the neck. 

Fibromyalgia:

It is a condition that leads to pain in the musculoskeletal system, sensitivity, and fatigue. Stiffness and pain in the muscles and joints of the neck are common when diagnosed with fibromyalgia. The severity of the pain and its consequences are based on the condition’s state. 

Spinal stenosis:

When the spinal cord gets compressed due to the narrowing of the spinal column, it results in spinal stenosis. It causes damage to surrounding nerves, tissues, and bones, leading to pain and impaired functioning. 

Slipped discs:

The vertebrae are separated by discs that enable proper movement of the spine and hold them in place. When the interior of these discs leaks through harder discs, they apply pressure on surrounding nerve structures resulting in pain and weakness. 

Treatment plans are formed after determining your condition. Physical therapy, spinal cord stimulation, medication, steroid injections, surgery, and maintaining healthy lifestyle habits such as good posture, not straining muscles, sleeping in a proper position, and quitting smoking can help pain management. 

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