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Neck Pain Treatment: a Aurora Chiropractor’s Perspective

man holding neck in painIn 30% of neck pain cases chronic symptoms develop which is why you want to address issues quickly. Ignoring mild symptoms can cause pain and dysfunction to progress and get worse.

Our lifestyle is the biggest contributor to neck pain. The following factors can be to blame:

  • Poor posture
  • Excessive computer use
  • Excessive cell phone use
  • Working from home
  • Homeschooling
  • Sleeping positions
  • Poor biomechanics
  • Sports traumas and injuries

Neck pain can also be caused by acute injuries or degeneration over time as a result of neglecting traumas, loss of healthy cervical structure, and not taking care of your spine or getting adjusted.

How We Treat Neck Pain

#1. Comprehensive consultation and exam

The first thing we do is a comprehensive consultation and exam. This is to see exactly what could be causing your acute or chronic neck pain. We want to get to the root cause to understand if it’s a simple muscle issue or a more complicated one. We also want to know how long you’ve been dealing with this pain and how it’s affecting your quality of life.

At Buchar Family Chiropractic, we don’t just focus on the symptoms. Based on the results of objective, in-depth chiropractic and functional orthopedic exams, we can start creating a picture of where your issue is coming from.

#2. Digital X-rays

One of the most powerful tools at our disposal is the digital X-ray. We use this technology to assess the curve in your cervical spine. Using the digital X-rays we can examine disc alignment, the level of spinal degeneration, neck curvature and head position all of which will contribute to our strategy for care.

#3. Specific chiropractic care

A subluxation is a misalignment of the vertebrae that compresses the spinal cord and nerves. Compressed nerves interfere with the nervous system’s ability to do its job, causing dysfunction and pain–your symptoms. Correcting the misalignment through chiropractic care will take that pressure off of the nerves and allow the body to heal the way it was designed.

#4. Massage therapy or soft tissue work

We use massage therapy to decrease muscle tension and address trigger point issues. Massage therapy is an excellent adjunct to chiropractic. It prepares the body for adjustments and helps those adjustments last longer.

#5. Custom therapeutic exercise plan

Using custom therapeutic exercise plans we can address strength imbalances. By correcting these imbalances we can change forward head posture and start to address conditions like upper cross syndrome.

We’ll also use exercises in the office such as cervical traction, vibration plates, static traction, and Denneroll work to complement the strengthening program.

#6. Cervical spinal decompression

This important therapy is used when the nerves are compressed due to a disc herniation or bulge. When that happens, the muscles can tighten up or nerves can be compressed causing pain. Spinal decompression pulls the discs apart, decreasing pressure on the nerve.

#7. Acupuncture

Acupuncture is an excellent way to decrease muscle tension, decrease inflammation, and increase circulation which speeds up the body’s natural healing process.

#8. Nutritional supplementation

When it comes to neck pain an anti-inflammatory diet is best. This will help keep muscle tension and spasms under control.

Common Causes of Neck Pain

Bulged cervical disc

The spinal disc is the spongy part between the bones that helps to support your spine and act as a shock absorber. Over time, the discs will wear down and dehydrate. They’ll start to compress and get thinner and the fibers will begin to tear. If they tear enough, the nucleus can push on the outside fiber of the disc putting pressure on the nerves. Neck pain can result as well as radiating pain, numbness, and tingling down the arms and into the hands.

Herniated cervical disc

A herniated disc is more severe than a bulged disc. It’s when the nucleus pushes through the outer lining of the disc. A herniated disc is compressing on the nerve in a more severe manner.

If it’s not treated or taken care of early, a herniated disc can lead to severe or permanent neurological issues, sometimes even surgery. That’s why it’s so important to take care of this as soon as possible.

Degenerative disc disease

This age-related condition occurs when the discs break down due to damage, neglect of the spine, and poor posture and spinal alignment. Obesity, smoking, even the type of job that you do can also contribute to degenerative disc disease. Although degenerative disc disease cannot be reversed it can be slowed through therapeutic exercises, spinal adjustments, and getting motion into the area.

Muscle strain/torticollis/whiplash

Muscle strain, torticollis, or whiplash can be a dull, achy pain or very intense with movement. The pain is usually localized and it can get to the point where you feel like you cannot move your neck.

An acute trauma, repetitive motion, poor posture, or weak neck muscles can all be blamed for the pain. It may resolve itself, but you want to address it early because it will help it heal better and with less chance of scar tissue.

Tech neck

We’re constantly looking down at our devices and employing poor posture at our desks. This is causing tech neck, a forward head posture that increases stress on the neck by increasing the weight of our head. We’re starting to see tech neck in children, teenagers, and young adults.

Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis is a modification of the bone structure that can form bone spurs due to a lack of motion or long-term improper biomechanics. The spurs irritate the spinal nerves and create neck pain. This usually all relates to untreated past trauma, poor posture, or cervical curve issues.

FAQ

When should you see a candidate for neck pain?

As early as possible, if we want to keep simple issues from becoming complicated issues. Anytime you leave or neglect something it will always get worse.

Is it okay to pop my own neck?

Definitely not. We know a lot of times it feels tight like we just have to get a release. But when you’re doing that you’re just forcing it; you’re not using X-rays or palpation to be as specific as possible with the adjustment. Over time, this can cause hypermobility and exacerbate the problem.

How can I relieve my neck pain?

You can do cervical stretches, cervical traction, and a combination of heat and ice.

How should I sleep with neck pain?

You want to sleep on your back, rolling a pillow slightly or getting a cervical pillow to create a slight curve to support your neck. Your goal is no muscle tension on the neck. If you’re on your side, we want your head completely aligned with your spine not tilted down or up.

How can you tell if your neck is out of alignment?

Any symptoms of neck tension, which includes pain, and the head tilting side to side or forward head posture shows the neck is out of alignment. We want to address these issues as soon as possible to correct them and get you on a path of healing.

Book an Appointment

If you have neck pain, we want to help you get relief. Contact us today to schedule an appointment!


Neck Pain Treatment Aurora IL | (630) 820-1330