Neck Pain in Ivanhoe
Neck pain is the most common pain people experience in today’s society, with around one in ten people suffering neck pain at any given time.
The causes are varied and range from mild muscle strains to severe chronic arthritic conditions. Problems in the neck commonly lead to shoulder pain, headaches, jaw pain, pins and needles down the arm, and upper back pain.
What Causes Neck Pain?
The most common cause of neck pain stems from benign musculoskeletal strains and sprains that occur as a result of poor posture, overuse or trauma. Other less common causes are whiplash, degenerative changes (arthritis) and nerve impingement.
1. Sprain or Strain Injuries
Poor posture is by far the most common cause of musculoskeletal neck strains and it is becoming an increasing problem in our society. This should come as no surprise considering the amount of time we spend sitting at desks, driving the car and on the computer.
The reason your neck is so susceptible to the effects of poor posture is because it is constantly trying to support and balance your head which weighs around 5 kg. Your neck is also the last chance your body has to make the fine tune adjustments needed to keep your eyes and ears level, allowing you to stay balanced. If there is any forward, or side to side movement from below, then your neck must adapt and compensate to keep you balanced.
Slight changes in head position cause big changes in the amount of muscle tension required to support its weight. In fact, the tension in your neck doubles for every 2-3 cm that you head is forward.
2. Arthritis And Degenerative Joint Changes
Neck pain caused by degenerative bone and joint conditions are not as common as strain or sprain injuries, but are are always considered in any patient who presents to our clinic over the age of 40.
Arthritic and degenerative changes in the cervical spine can vary quite considerably in their presentation. In the early stages, arthritic change may present exactly the same as a neck strain injury, as it is the surrounding tissues that cause the pain, and not the actual degenerative tissues.
Joint Degeneration is a normal process that occurs as you get older.
3. Nerve Impingement
Irritation to the nerves of the cervical spine can be caused by mechanical pressure anywhere along their path – from their roots near the spine to their endings in the muscle or skin. Disc herniation and bony encroachment are two of the most common causes of nerve irritation.
a) Disc herniation or disc bulge: Caused by trauma or degeneration to the discs in the cervical spine that results in the softer central portion herniating through the outer ring of the disc. This herniation of the disc can press on the nerve causing pain into the neck, shoulder and also down the arm.
Cervical disc herniation can either occur spontaneously following a trauma, or it may be preceded by a history of neck pain over a number of years. It is usually characterised by a constant aching sensation in the neck, with referred pain into shoulder and down the arm, that may develop into tingling and numbness.
b) Bony encroachment: Any condition that occurs as a result of growth or movement of the cervical vertebrae that decreases the space for the adjacent spinal cord and nerves. Compression of the cervical spinal nerves can cause referred pain that radiates into the shoulder and down the arm.
How Do Osteopaths Treat Neck Pain?
The most important part of any any injury is getting the correct diagnosis.As the leading and most experienced provider of Osteopathy, Pilates & Remedial Massage in Ivanhoe, we have been successfully treating all forms of neck pain for over 20 years.
We follow a treatment process that has been developed and refined over the past 20 years to ensure you receive the best treatment option at the right stage of your recovery.
Click Here for a comprehensive outline of our treatment process and how we can help treat and manage your Neck Pain.
How Long Will Your Neck Pain Last?
This really depends on the cause of your pain and the nature of your injury. 99% of neck pain occurs as a result of simple strain or sprain injuries. With correct diagnosis and treatment these injuries normally resolve in 2-3 weeks.
With more chronic injuries and complex causes of pain, treatment will usually last from 6-10 weeks. We also incorporate strengthening exercises to stabilise the area and help prevent a recurrence of the symptoms.
Neck Pain Booking
Book your appointment today with one of our experienced Osteopaths to find out how we can help treat your Neck Pain.
Relinque Sports & Spinal Group is conveniently located in Ivanhoe, near Heidelberg, Fairfield, Northcote, and Kew and are highly trained in the diagnosis and treatment of Neck Pain.