Neck pain is a very common complaint and usually will only last a few weeks. It can occur because of bad posture, strain, injury or stress. In more severe cases it can be accompanied by numbness, weakness or pain in the arms, or headaches.
Symptoms of neck pain include:
- Pain that increases when the head is held in one position for too long.
- Difficulty in moving the head, in particular in looking over your shoulder
- Muscle tightness
- Muscle spasms
There are a number of causes for neck pain including:
Muscle strain – for example, caused by hunching over or bending the neck for prolonged periods when working or using a computer.
Tension or Stress – this can cause the muscles to become tight and sore. Grinding your teeth or TMJ (temporomandibular joint syndrome) can sometimes be associated with this.
Wear and tear – with age the joints and the cartilage between the bones become worn. Osteoarthritis and bone spurs may also occur causing wear and tear.
Trapped Nerve – muscle tightness or herniated discs may cause compression of the nerves in the neck and cause pain.
Injury – whiplash is commonly associated with neck pain, where the injury has caused the muscles of the neck to become stretched and strained.
Disease – Certain disease such as rheumatoid arthritis, meningitis or cancer may cause neck pain.
You can help yourself in cases where the pain is not severe by doing things such as maintaining good posture, taking frequent breaks so as to move and stretch the neck and back, sleep in a good position and reduce tension or stress in your life.
Over the counter, painkillers may also help.
Where the pain is persisting or increasing you will need additional therapy to clear the pain.
At The Hannon Clinic, we seek to find the cause of the pain and work to clear the cause as well as the symptoms. Using physical therapy techniques such as structural re-alignment (where a very gently method is used) along with massage and stretching we can free the neck off.
In addition, we can work with you to understand the role of stress or tension in our lives and how they affect us physically and then teach you highly effective techniques to reduce stress in your life.