Just about everyone has heard about something being a “pain in the neck.” While this phrase is often used in a joking or sarcastic way, there is something more serious you may refer to, using these same words. Neck pain is rather common, and can be traced to a variety of causes. Even poor posture can produce pain in this area, over a period of time. People find they experience discomfort, even pain, from sitting in one position too long, leaning over a computer keyboard or concentrating on a workbench project.
It’s quite possible you can suffer from neck pain because of osteoarthritis or another medical condition. You may also experience numbness that extends to the shoulders and down the arm. It’s possible this could be accompanied by muscle spasms, headache, as well inability to rotate your head or move it side to side. You can prevent some of this from occurring if you concentrate on keeping you head centered over the spine, for example.
Try to focus on keeping your body in alignment – good posture with straight shoulders. Take a break for just a few minutes when you’re involved in a project at the computer or when working. Just stand and stretch. Walk around. Take a close look at how your desk, computer and chair are arranged. Adjust slightly and see if you get positive results.
If the pain doesn’t subside, it may be time to talk with a medical professional. Of course, if the pain follows an injury or accident, you should talk with your doctor as soon as possible. Consult with medical professional if the pain persists, if it extends down the arms or legs, or headache, weakness and numbness is one of the symptoms.
When you visit with a doctor be prepared to answer questions such as: Exact location of the pain? Is the pain sharp or is it a dull ache? Is there numbness or weakness? Is the pain worse when you make a certain movement or when you cough, for example? As he or she begins to get an idea of what’s causing the pain, it may be time for X-rays or other tests to help the medical professional diagnose the condition.
It’s possible to get temporary relief from neck pain with off-the-shelf medications such as ibuprofen, but it’s important to remember this is not a long-term solution. A doctor may prescribe something a bit stronger, though this should not be a solution to depend on for any length of time. Sometimes, you can reduce or eliminate this pain with physical therapy, a combination of heat and ice etc. These may produce results if the pain is caused by improper posture, for example.
However, more aggressive techniques might be called for if the issue is rooted in something more serious. Some special injection techniques might be tried. Electrical nerve stimulation could also have some positive effect. Surgical repair could be called for if injury has caused the pain. If you’re suffering from neck pain and want to find a solution, get started today by calling a trusted medical professional.