Neck Pain Relief
Neck pain comes in many different forms. It may be acute or chronic, dull or sharp, but either way, it is frustrating and should be addressed. So why do so many of us ignore it, hoping it will go away on its own? If you’re suffering from acute or chronic neck pain, it’s time to get help. We can get you on the road to recovery with a customized Physical Therapy plan.
Some people look at pain as the whole problem rather than the symptom it is. Our bodies use pain as an indicator that there is an underlying disease, injury, problem, or condition. In fact, pain’s basic biological function is to alert you to an injury and keep you from further harm. For instance, if you burn yourself on the stove, the painful blister serves as a reminder of the hazards of heat. Pain is a complex communication of nerve endings to your brain. It may happen as the result of damage to the tissue where the nerve endings live (such as when you burn yourself) or it may happen when the nerve impulses that travel to and from your brain are interrupted (when there is some form of nerve damage).
What Causes Neck Pain?
The simple answer to this question is, it depends. In many cases, neck pain can be traced back to a single event or injury. Perhaps you are in a car accident and experience neck pain after the wreckage is cleared. Maybe you are reliving your glory days at a heavy metal concert only to have your neck suddenly seize up. Chronic neck pain can also happen when you sit slumped over your desk, have poor standing posture, drive a car or truck for a living, or repeatedly move your head in a certain motion for work.
The Neck Pain-Headache Connection
There are eight spinal nerves that branch off the spinal cord into the neck forming something called the cervical plexus. These nerves then have branches that end in different parts of your head, neck, and shoulders. That is why it is no surprise that someone experiencing neck pain also tends to experience a greater number of headaches that also tend to be severe. For some people, addressing neck pain can also resolve many of their headache symptoms. However, this connection is not limited to pain in the neck. In fact, you do not necessarily have to be in a lot of pain in your neck to have more frequent and severe headaches. Your neck’s strength, range of motion and flexibility can also impact your cervical plexus’ function. If you cannot move your neck from side to side, you tend to hold greater tension in your shoulders which, in turn, can lead to headaches. Likewise, if your neck muscles cannot hold your head in its proper position, you will tend to experience more pain in your head from the strain.
Physical Therapy For Neck Pain
Physical Therapists are musculoskeletal experts who can help you improve your neck’s strength, flexibility, and range of motion. Your Physical Therapist will begin by performing a thorough evaluation which may include discussion of previous injuries, previous treatments and any other diagnostic tests results that you have received from your doctor.
Physical Therapy may include:
- Manual therapy – Hands-on soft tissue mobilizations to decrease pain and increase flexibility.
- Targeted exercises – Exercises that focus on range of motion and strengthening.
- Activity modification – Education on ways to modify your normal activities to avoid flaring your symptoms.
- Ergonomic recommendations – Possible suggestions for adjustments to your desk, chair or routine that may help prevent further injury.
Don’t let your neck pain continue to rule your life. Contact Us Today at Pinellas Park & Seminole, FL Centers and schedule your consultation to find out how Physical Therapy can help you return to the things you love.