Blog - Neck Pain: Causes, Prevention and Treatment

Most people will experience neck pain at some point in life due to varying reasons, including poor posture and underlying medical conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis. While it usually is not a common problem, Las Vegas neck pain can limit productivity; simple bending activities can aggravate the pain. Fortunately, most mild to moderate neck pain goes away with home remedies like over-the-counter medications and hot compresses. However, chronic pain that does not respond to self-care measures requires other treatment methods like corticosteroid injections. Below are the different causes of neck pain.

What Causes Neck Pain?

·         Worn out joints- The joints in your neck tend to wear out as you advance in age, just like other bones in your body. When the cartilage between bones deteriorates, inflammation occurs because bones are rubbing against each other. Medical conditions such as osteoarthritis destroy the cartilage and, over time, result in bone spurs formation, which affects joint motion.

·         Nerve compression- The spinal cord nerves can be pressed or compressed as a result of herniated discs or bone overgrowth. Other medical conditions such as spinal stenosis cause nerve compression resulting in pain and discomfort.

·         Medical conditions- Although neck pain is a common and mainly mild problem, sometimes it may be a sign of underlying health problems. For example, diseases such as cancer, meningitis, and rheumatoid arthritis are associated with neck pain.

·         Muscle strain- Your neck is made up of muscles which when overused, trigger muscle strains that result in pain. Overuse of these muscles can result from hunching over your phone for long hours or reading in bed. Muscle strain is the most common cause of neck pain as an average American spends more than 5 hours with their head tilted on a smartphone.

·         Injuries- Accidents such as car crashes often result in whiplash injury – occurs when there is a sudden and awkward movement, straining the neck’s soft tissues.

Different Ways to Reduce Your Risk of Neck Pain

Adjust your computer and desk area to eye level. Ensure your gaze is at least on the top-third of your computer or laptop. If you have to look down, that is a sign for adjusting your seat or desk. If you are using a laptop, connect it to a different monitor to maintain eye level. Consider an ergonomic chair and desk to obtain the correct posture.

·         Exercise your neck- Gentle stretches keep your muscles flexible and reduce your risk of muscle strain. You can do short sets of strengthening exercises each day throughout the day.

·         Hydrate- The importance of water in the body is numerous, and one of the benefits is nourishing and hydrating the discs between the vertebrae in your neck. Since they are majorly comprised of water, being well hydrated keeps them pliable and strong.

·         Evenly distribute weight- Avoid carrying heavy loads on one side of the body. Consider using a bag back since it evenly distributes weight across your shoulders. Always take what you need to lessen the weight of your luggage.

If you have further inquiries or need to learn more about neck pain treatment, consult with your specialist at McNulty Spine.