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5 Common Causes of Neck Pain
Have you ever woken up in the morning with a stiff neck and it’s hard to move? You’re not alone, plenty of Americans have had this issue, as has every other country around the world. It’s not a matter of it, but a matter when will this happen to me. Neck pain is exactly what it sounds like, a pain in the neck. It troubles people all throughout the world and can prevent people from living comfortably. Neck pain is one of the most common areas in the spine to be troublesome, next to lower back pain. There are multiple causes as to why one experiences neck pain, this blog will address these areas and will discuss the chiropractic viewpoint and give solutions to the issue at hand. There a lot of moving parts with the cervical vertebra (neck bones) and it can be very complex as were we designed very intelligently.
Vertebral Subluxation (misalignment) in the neck is a major culprit and common cause of neck pain. The bones misalign millimeters at most but have profound effects on the tissue that connect and hold the neck together and cause imbalances leading to neck pain. These imbalances in the structure in your neck can lead to different pain syndromes and conditions varying per person.
Another major cause global and entire reversal of the curvature in the neck (or even a reduction of the cervical curve), which should be shaped similar to a banana and at about roughly 45 degrees on average. Most chiropractors see on an x-ray that most people have a loss in their normal neck curvature leading to various health issues. The reason how this causes neck pain is simple to understand. With the average human head being about the weight of a bowling ball (12-16 lbs), the more forward your head is, the more stress gravity plays on your bones, discs, joints, muscles, and other connect tissues. When there is more stress being placed on the neck than what your body is able to adapt to and over some, causes the body to break down and then express symptoms.
Poor posture is also another cause common cause of neck pain. With more and more people working at desks and spending more time looking at their smartphones, tablets, and computer screens, we see more people’s postures moving more forward and downward versus sitting and standing more upright as we are designed to do. As mentioned in the previous paragraph, the more we fight against gravity, the more stress that will be placed upon our skeletons. In an example, spend all day with your head looking toward the ground or bend at the waist, and see how you feel afterward.
Degeneration or arthritis in the joint in the neck are another common cause of neck pain. This is not the case for all people, but for many cases that we see in both of our offices. Degeneration is not particularly due to older age but is based on how long you have had a problem causing your joints to break down in structure and appearance. Degenerative arthritis can be seen in a teenager and may not be present in common in their 60s. Some people may also have severe levels of degeneration in the neck with no symptoms of neck pain, and others will have no signs of wear and tear and can present with signs and symptoms of neck pain.
Inflammation is another common cause of pain that plagues people, and inflammation in the neck and its surrounding structures is not something to be ignored. Inflammation can be caused by a number of things and can vary in extent from one person to another. Inflammation of the nerves, muscles, tendons, ligaments, discs, connective tissues and other joints can also affect the neck and can be the cause of the problem. Some reason for inflammation can be stemmed from other health conditions a person may already have, poor posture, weak muscles, improper mechanics within the joints, misalignment, sprains/strains of the soft tissues, and even diet may be a factor to consider as well.
There are many causes and reasons why one experiences neck pain and it all comes down to figuring out what the cause is at the individual level for each person. We will all have some sort of similarity, but each person is different and there is no cookie-cutter way to determine what the exact problem is without doing a full and thorough examination. As there be more reasons as to why you experience neck pain, even beyond what is mentioned in this blog post, out chiropractors on staff are fully trained in determining the cause of your health problems. A full examination with one of our Doctors of Chiropractic will be able to work toward finding the cause of your health concerns. We have two offices in the Indianapolis area to help serve you and your family. Give us a call in Indianapolis at (317) 288-5480 or in Carmel/Westfield at (317) 818-0940 to see if we are a good fit to help you out with your health concerns.
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