Chiropractic Care and How it can relieve Neck Pain

How can you tell if your neck is out of alignment?

Role of the cervical spine

Your spine is composed of a column of vertebrae or bones that begin at the base of your skull and run down to your pelvic bone. The spine provides support and stability to the entire body, including the neck. However, Dr. Rick Still of Family Chiropractic Care explains that since your cervical spine supports more than just your neck, a misalignment can manifest in other body parts as well.

Symptoms associated with neck misalignment and Cervical Spine Damage

  •   Chronic headaches
  •   Tingling or numbness
  •   Lower back pain
  •   Neck pain
  •   Excessive fatigue
  •   Knee pain

Cervical Spine misalignment may inhibit your neck’s full range of motion. If you can’t manage to twist your neck to the right or left fully, the chances are that the neck pain is from an alignment issue. The same may be signified by the development of neck pain every time you turn in either direction.

What Causes Neck and Spinal Cord Pain

The cervical spine or neck is a coordinated network of joints, bones, muscles, and nerves. The network is designed to work together to provide stability, strength, and nerve communication. Being a network that correlates for optimal function, several factors can lead to pain and tension in this part of the body.

The following are the most common causes of neck pain:

  •       Spinal stenosis: This condition causes the small nerve passageways in the body’s vertebrae to compress and narrow, trapping nerve roots. Compressing the spinal canal may cause shoulder, arm, and neck pain and numbness, in circumstances where the nerves are unable to function normally.
  •       Osteoarthritis: This is a common joint disorder that causes progressive deterioration of cartilage. The body reacts by forming bone spurs which in turn affect motion in the joints.
  •     Poor Posture: Weakness in abdominal muscles, obesity, and poor posture often affect and disrupt the spine balance. Which causes your neck to bend forward for compensation, resulting in neck pain. In addition, postural stress can lead to chronic neck pain with symptoms that extend to the arms and upper back.
  •       Injuries: An Injury and accident often lead to a sudden movement of the neck or head accompanied by a rebound in the opposite direction, a motion called whiplash. A sudden whipping head motion can injure the supporting tissues of the neck and head. Neck muscles react to the motion by contracting and tightening, which creates muscle fatigue. Muscle fatigue often results in a stiff neck and pain. Car accidents are the most common cause of this kind of neck injury. Sometimes whiplash is associated with injuring muscles and ligaments, intervertebral joints, and nerve roots.
  •       Herniated discs: a degenerative disc disease that causes a reduction in the height and elasticity of intervertebral discs. Over time a disc could herniate or bulge and cause neck pain and tingling that runs to the arm.

When should I see a chiropractor for neck pain?

Sometimes exercises and stretches just aren’t enough. For example, it’s time to see a doctor if your neck pain or back pain keeps recurring even after making lifestyle changes. Also, if your neck pain is affecting and limiting your mobility, you should see a chiropractor as soon as possible.

Many people tend to assume that an injury or neck pain symptoms will eventually go away, which isn’t always the case. Others try self-treatment and end up abusing muscle relaxants to counter pain. 

Delaying treatment could worsen your spinal cord condition or, worse, lead to chronic issues that may require surgery. However, we explore all other treatments to determine if an alternative to surgery exists. If the pain interferes with your enjoyment of everyday life and activities, it’s best to see a chiropractor before things worsen. We will provide medical advice, diagnosis, and aftercare to ensure you are okay. Take note of the pain and its level of spread because if it extends to the arms or hands, it is always an indication of something serious.

How to Get Relief from Neck Pain?

One simple way to get rid of neck pain is to stretch. Gently stretch your neck until you get rid of any numbness, tingling, or pain sensation. Begin to stretch your neck gently from side to side, then slowly introduce your arms and legs to the stretch. Sometimes stress on your spinal cord could transfer the discomfort to your arms or legs. Perform the exercise at intervals throughout your day.

If the pain persists, try improving your sleep posture for a couple of nights. If there’s still no improvement, then it may be time to seek medical advice.

Can a chiropractor treat my neck pain?

The first step in getting relief from severe neck pain is knowing exactly what is causing the pain. Only after identifying the cause of neck pain will our doctor offer advice, diagnosis, or treatment. During a chiropractic visit, your doctor will inquire about your current symptoms and remedies you might have tried already. They’ll also perform neurological and physical exams that will locate the source of your neck pain. Also, ensure you mention drugs and supplements that you may have been taking before the visit even if they don’t seem related.

During your physical exam, the chiropractor observes your range of motion, posture, and overall condition to conduct to identify the movements that cause the pain. The doctor may also feel your spine to note its alignment and curvature then for muscle spasms. They’ll additionally check whether your shoulder areas are in order.

The chiropractor tests your muscle strength, reflexes, pain spread, and nerve changes for the neurological exam.

Chiropractors are conservative care doctors whose scope does not extend to surgeries or the use of drugs. However, should your doctor diagnose a neck pain condition outside their scope, then they’ll provide medical advice diagnostics to refer you to the appropriate medical specialist.

Chiropractic Care for neck pain in Longview, WA

If you got injured somehow and ended up with neck pain, visit Family Chiropractic Care at Longview, WA. The length of your chiropractic care will depend on your particular health information. For example, patients who experience neck pain resulting from sports injuries, arthritis, or auto accidents may require a long-term care and treatment plan. On the other hand, parents experiencing neck pain resulting from pinched nerves or poor posture may only require short-term care.

If you are a victim of constant stiffness and pain or just any form of tension that just won’t go away even with rest or time, you may have out-of-alignment vertebrae within your spinal column. Contact Family Chiropractic Care today for a consultation and allow our chiropractor with over 34 years of experience to ease you of your neck pain.