Chronic neck pain to the outsider may seem like just an uncomfortable occurrence, but to the person suffering, they know it is life altering. Neck pain affects energy, brain function, attention/focus, motivation, bowel function and leads to spinal degeneration. The physical, mental and emotional toll neck pain takes is costly and in most situations completely avoidable with the right combination of therapies.
Chiropractors can be the right practitioner for chronic neck pain. They are trained in the complex anatomy and functionality of the neck and upper back. With the adverse side effects and addiction rates from pain medications continuing to soar, it is time to take seriously more effective options. Therapy and adjustments from a skilled chiropractor have been proven from empirical evidence and the medical literature to be more effective short and long term for neck pain. Consider these 6 issues as the cause of your neck pain and get the relief you deserve:
- Scar tissue: Whether from chronic improper movement or injury, scar tissue causes decreased range of motion. This results in degeneration, but also prevents good spinal adjustments. Physiotherapy, stem cell therapy, and decreasing inflammation can all support decreasing and preventing more scar tissue
- Forward head posture: Most Americans have anywhere from 2-4 inches of forward head posture meaning their head is 2-4 inches too far forward. This comes from looking town at devices too often and too long. Every extra inch of forward head posture adds the stress of 10 lbs to the spine. Under a heavy load, the spine will compress and compensate which results in pain and degeneration.
- Range of motion: decreased movement in the neck can be caused by scar tissue, and scar tissue can the the cause of decreased range of motion. Full range of motion actually affects the firing of nerve receptors in the neck. Decreased movement results in decreased nerve receptor action. When the nerve receptors are not fully firing, this leads to spinal degeneration. Be sure your practitioner assesses range of motion as part of preventing further degeneration and pain.
- Subluxation: Proper vertebral alignment is a chiropractor’s wheelhouse. This is their “bread and butter,” so to speak. A well aligned spine is imperative for improving neck pain, but only part of the chronic neck pain equation. If your chiropractor only adjusts your spine without assessing and addressing the other five issues, you may want to consider an upgrade.
- Inflammation: systemic inflammation must be addressed when solving chronic neck pain. Inflammation leads to thickening and scarring of connective tissue. This leads to spinal degeneration and of course more pain. Inflammation should be seen through a lifestyle lense by considering food choices, poor sleep, chronic stress, improper movement, and toxic relationships as factors in your pain.
- Trigger points: These are hard spots of chronically contracted muscle that damage nerves, decrease range of motion, and hold pain. Finding the way to release these that works for you is important from both a pain and inflammation standpoint.
If you think your chronic neck pain was caused by someone else’s negligence, be it traumatically, or through continual, long term, environmental negligence, contact an attorney today.