Category: Neck Pain

BPS 30: What are the Treatment Options for Neck Pain?

Neck pain is common in the US. The pain affects millions of people every year. In this post, we will explain different types of treatment options for neck pain.

Nonsurgical Treatment Option

Doctors recommend self-care as initial treatment for managing pain. Here are some of the nonsurgical treatment options of acute neck pain.

Rest

Most of the times, neck pain goes away on its own. Proper rest for a few days can accelerate the healing process of the neck tendons and muscles. During the healing period, it’s important to avoid strenuous movements and activities that may exacerbate pain.

Ice Massage or Heat Therapy

Ice massage or heat therapy can also help reduce pain. Initially, ice is applied to the affected area. Application of ice can reduce pain and swelling by closing small blood muscles. This prevents the swelling from getting worse. Next, heat and ice can be applied on an alternative basis to reduce pain.

Back Massage

Back massage can help soothe muscle spasms and tension. It will stimulate the circulation thereby accelerating the healing process. As a result, the pain subsides on its own within a few hours after a massage.

Improved Pos ...

Continue reading View Comments

BPS 29: What are the Causes and Treatment of a Neck Strain?

A neck strain happens when fibers in a neck muscle stretches and tears. The injury is also known as pulled muscle. The pain in case of a neck strain vary in intensity. A neck strain generally heals on its own. However, in some cases surgical treatment is required.

Causes of Neck Strain

A neck sprain normally occurs due to an injury of the neck’s soft tissues. The neck contains more than twenty muscles. These muscles support the upright position of the head. They also help facilitate the movements of the neck, head, jaw, shoulders, and upper back.

The muscles consist of muscles fibers. Within each fiber are myofibrils that perform muscle contractions. When the muscle stretches or overexerts, small tears can develop in the tendon, muscle, or the connective tissue between the tendon and muscle.

Extensive neck strains result in inflammation that result in additional pain and swelling. It also requires a longer recovery period. The healing period depends on the muscle fibers that have been torn due to the injury.

While there are many types of neck muscles, the following two muscles are at increased risk of strain.

Trapezius

The kite sized musc ...

Continue reading View Comments

BPS 28: What Does Neck Grinding and Cracking Mean?

A cracking noise can sometimes be heard during movement of the neck. In some cases, the sound of snapping, grinding or popping may be heard when moving the neck. These sounds can be heard when moving the joints as well.

Most people have heard grinding or cracking of the neck at some point. The sound may be heard when turning the head when backing up the car. Generally, the sounds should not be a matter of a concern. However, if it occurs with other symptoms such as after a trauma or injury, it could be due to a serious medical problem.

About Neck Grinding and Cracking

Neck cracking and grinding are generally painless. It is can also sometimes be accompanied by different degrees of neck pain. The pain can range from dull aches to acute pains.

Generally, older people experience cracking or grinding of the neck, which is also known as neck crepitus. However, sometimes younger people can also experience neck pain. The frequency of neck grinding and cracking generally vary. Some people may experience pain after a few months, while others may experience the pain every day during neck movement.

Although neck crepitus can happen with arthritis, but the fact i ...

Continue reading View Comments

BPS 27: What are the Causes and Treatment of a Stiff Neck?

Stiff neck rest results in soreness and difficulty in moving the neck. The pain generally occurs when trying to move the head to the side. It may also be accompanied with a neck pain, headache, arm pain, or shoulder pain. An individual may need to turn the entire body in order to look sideways in case of a stiff neck.

How a patient manages a stiff neck will determine the recovery period, pain level, and likely treatment of the condition.

What Causes a Stiff Neck?

Stiffness in the neck can occur due to many reasons. The most common reason for a stiff neck is a soft tissue sprain or a muscle strain. The levator scapulae muscle that connects the cervical spine with the shoulder controls the C3 and C4 cervical nerves. This muscle may become strained due to common activities such as:

-Sudden impact or fall that pushes the head to the sides -Sleeping in an awkward position -Turning the head to the side repeatedly when performing certain actions such as the front crawl stroke -Slouching forward to look at the computer screen -Excessive anxiety or stress can result in tension in the neck -Holding the neck in a position that causes strain in the neck such as holding a ...

Continue reading View Comments

BPS 26: What is the Cause of Chronic Neck Pain?

The neck consists of a network of bones, nerves, joints, and muscles. These body parts are directed by the spinal cord and the brain. They provide strength and stability to the body.

A number of different problems can result in neck pain. Irritation along the pathway of the nerve may result in pain in the head, arm, hand, and shoulder. Spinal cord irritation can result in pain in the legs and areas below the neck.

Symptoms of Neck Pain

Most symptoms of neck pain subside within a few weeks. In case the neck pain persists, it signals some serious underlying medical problem. Early intervention is necessary for such a situation to provide relief from pain.

Some of the symptoms of neck pain include the following.

-Stabbing or sharp pain in one area -A stiff neck that results in difficulty in turning the head -Tenderness or soreness in the neck -Pain that radiates to the arms, shoulders, or fingers -Tingling or weakness in the arms, shoulder, or fingers -Trouble in lifting objects or gripping -Problems in balance, coordination, and walking -Loss or bowel or bladder control.

Symptoms of neck pain can be minor in some cases. In other cases, the symptoms can ...

Continue reading View Comments

BPS 25: What are the Treatment Options for Cervical Degenerative Disc Disease?

Cervical degenerative disc occurs when the spinal disc near the neck becomes damaged. Pain from cervical degenerative disc disease can be alleviated through self-care and non- surgical options. However, in case the pain does not subside, surgery may be required.

In this article, we will look at both surgical and nonsurgical treatment options for cervical degenerative disc disease.

Non-surgical Treatment Plans 1. Pain Management with Injection and Medications

Doctors may recommend pain-relieving medications such as ibuprofen, aspirin, or others for cervical disk pain. If the pain-relieving medications do not provide pain relief, doctors may recommend stronger medications such as muscle relaxants medication Vicodin or oral steroids. Also, doctors may recommend injections such as cervical facet injection or an epidural steroid injection to deliver medications directly to the affected area.

2. Lifestyle Changes

Certain actions like craning the neck when looking at the computer or mobile screen, flexing the neck forward when driving, or slouching when standing can cause damage to the cervical spinal disc. Modifying actions to refrain from such actions will result ...

Continue reading View Comments

BPS 23: An Overview of Cervical Degenerative Disc Disease

Cervical degenerative disc disease results in pain in the neck. It can also lead to radiating arm pain. The condition develops when one or more discs that act as a shock absorber in the cervical spine undergoes degeneration.

Degeneration of the cervical spine is a normal aging process. Our spinal discs undergo wear and tear during movement. The symptoms of the wear and tear are not noticeable at the beginning. However, as we grow older, the symptoms become noticeable due to increased wear and tear.

How Damage of Cervical Disc Occurs?

Our body has six gel-like cervical discs. There is one disc located between the cervical spine of the vertebrae. The disc prevents rubbing of the vertebral bones with the movement of the neck. It absorbs the sock that prevents damage to the spinal disc.

Every disc consists of a strong outer layer. This outer layer is made of annulus fibrosus, which is woven cartilage strands. Inside the strands is a soft interior that is filled with nucleus pulposus, which provides shock absorption property.

The discs are about 85 percent water in children. The disc begins to lose water over time as a normal part of the aging process. The ...

Continue reading View Comments

BSP 21: An Overview of Degenerative Disc Disease

Degenerative disc disease is a common condition that results in neck and back pain. The condition is also one of the least understood medical condition.

Degenerative disc disease can result in pain in the neck and back. The pain due to degenerative disc can occur in the lower or upper back. In this post, you will learn more about how degenerative disc disease causes back pain.

About Degenerative Disc Disease

Disc degermation is common that occurs with time. The spinal disks at the back act similar to shock absorbers in a car. They are located between the bones and vertebrae of the spine. The discs help the back stay flexible as you twist and bend.

Symptoms of degenerative disc disease include numbness, weakness, and shooting pains. The pain can occur in the back or also the arms and legs, known as radicular pain. Disc degeneration typically consists of a chronic pain with intermittent episodes of severe pain.

Types of a Disc Degeneration

There are two common types of disc degeneration.

-Lumbar Spine — Disc degeneration in the lumbar spine results in pain in the lower back.

-Cervical Spine — Cervical spine degermation result ...

Continue reading View Comments

BPS 20: Symptoms and Diagnosis of Spinal Stenosis

Spinal stenosis may have different symptoms. The symptoms depend on the severity and the location of stenosis. In this post, we will look at the common symptoms of spinal stenos as well as proper diagnosis tests to identify the condition.

What are Common Spinal Stenosis Symptoms?

Spinal stenosis develops slowly over time. The symptoms can also occur intermittently. Instead of continuous pain, the symptoms can come and go. The symptoms of spinal stenosis may also occur when performing certain activities such as walking, riding a back or standing upright.

Patients suffering from spinal stenosis may experience relief from pain by lying down. They may also experience relief when in a flexed forward position.

Leg pain may develop due to lumbar spine stenosis. The medical word for the leg pain is claudication. It can be caused due to vascular claudication (arterial insufficiency) or neurogenic claudication due to spinal stenosis. In either condition, leg pain will subside with rest. The patient will have to sit down for a few minutes to ease the pain in the lower back.

In case of lumbar stenosis, pain may subside after flexing forward or sitting. This will ...

Continue reading View Comments

BPS 19: What are the Treatment Options for Spinal Stenosis?

Spinal stenosis affects about 2.4 million people in the US. Most people experience severe pain due to spinal stenosis. Individuals suffering from the condition have difficulty in walking or writing for a long period of time. Some people have to use a cane to maintain balance when walking.

Spinal stenosis problem can be treated with nonsurgical and surgical options. In this article, we will inform about five common treatment options for the condition.

1. Behavioral Modification

Individuals suffering from spinal stenosis treatment are ordered to avoid activities that can worsen the symptoms. Recommended activity modification may include walking while leaning on a walker, or bent over instead of walking upright. Also, the individual may be advised to sit in a recliner rather than sitting in a chair.

2. Epidural Injections

Another treatment option for spinal stenosis is epidural injection. Doctors inject cortisone into the epidural space. This can help provide temporary relief from symptoms of spinal stenosis. However, recent studies have questioned the efficacy of the injections. There has also been concern over the risk of corticosteroid injections for patient ...

Continue reading View Comments

Robin BackPainExpert

Physiotherapists & Back Pain Expert

Twenty years ago I was lucky to survive a serious hockey injury. In a sport where big men zoomaround on hard ice and solid wood sticks are slung furiously, a difficult back injury is what every player fears.
It took a long time for me to climb back to a normal life. But when I did, I was determined to spend the rest of his life helping back pain victims everywhere.
As a physiotherapist and back pain expert I have treated thousands of patients over 20 years, built a respected back pain clinic, created the site BackPainSecrets.Com and authored the book “Back Pain Secrets.”
Learn more about me here.