The old adage of “a pain in the neck” can be much more than a saying for some. Neck pain can range from a nuisance to a debilitating condition, and can even limit mobility. Here is a list of common neck pain causes, and treatments that can alleviate the pain.
Cervical osteoarthritis is a degenerative condition where the protective joint cartilage breaks down, causing the bones in the neck to rub against each other. This rubbing leads to pain, inflammation and loss of mobility. This condition is most common in individuals over the age of 50. Symptoms worsen when performing certain activities, and can include numbness and tingling extremities in conjunction with pain.
Treatment: mild cases of cervical osteoarthritis can be treated with anti-inflammatory drugs or corticosteroid injections. For more extreme cases, muscle relaxants may provide relief, as can physical therapy and massage therapy. Cervical fusion to remove bone spurs may be recommended for the most severe cases.
Spinal stenosis refers to the narrowing of spaces within your spine. This can cause numbness, tingling and pain. These symptoms can worsen over time if the condition remains untreated. In cervical spinal stenosis, this narrowing occurs in the neck area.
Treatment: Medications may treat the symptoms of cervical spinal stenosis. Anti-inflammatory medications as well as some antidepressants and anti-seizure drugs prove promising. Physical therapy can provide relief by helping maintain flexibility. Surgery will be recommended if other treatments fail.
A pinched cervical spine can lead to a stiff neck, severely limiting mobility. It can also cause pain and numbness that can travel down the shoulder and arm.
Treatment: A pinched nerve can usually be treated with rest, anti-inflammatory medication and physical therapy.
One of the most common causes of neck pain is stress. High stress causes tension in the muscles of the upper back and neck, leading to pain and stiffness, which can also be accompanied by headache.
Treatment: Neck stretches, therapy, meditation and massage are all effective treatments to battle the stress that leads to neck pain.
If you suffer from a painful neck, proper diagnosis is key to the right treatment. Call Hanowell Spine Clinic today to get to the bottom of your neck pain, and find the best pain-relieving solution for you.