Neck pain comes in just after back pain as one of the most common musculoskeletal problems, with up to 70% of all adults expected to suffer from neck pain at some point in their lives. The prevalence of this pain also seems to be growing, making proper diagnosis and treatment all the more important. At the office of Steven C. Dennis, MD, in Newport Beach, California, Dr. Dennis has extensive experiencing identifying the root cause of your neck pain and providing treatment that lasts. If you’re suffering from chronic neck pain, call Dr. Dennis to schedule your consultation or book online.
SImilar to back pain, there are a variety of potential causes for neck pain, and it’s not always easy to pinpoint yours. Some of the most common reasons you might experience neck pain include:
Overuse of your neck muscles, including time spent stooped or hunched over a computer screen, can lead to muscle strains.
Like your spine and other mobile parts of your body, your neck is comprised of a series of joints. Over time, these joints can weaken and deteriorate with age, leading to painful bone spurs.
Herniated discs can affect the upper portion of your spine as well, compressing the nerves closer to your neck and causing pain.
Traumatic injuries that affect your neck, such as whiplash, can damage muscle or even cause fractures in your neck.
Some diseases can cause neck pain, such as arthritis affecting your neck or a cancerous growth near your upper spine.
Aside from neck pain caused by traumatic injury, this pain is most associated with people with poor posture or work habits. Stooping over a work computer for hours on end or sleeping in a position that causes your neck to misalign with your back can quickly lead to strain and pain. It’s for this reason that office workers commonly suffer from neck pain.
Smokers are also at greater risk for neck pain, as smoking reduces blood flow throughout the spine. Over time, this can weaken and damage the neck and spine.
The most common symptom of neck pain comes from holding your head in a particular position over a period of time. This pain can also make it difficult for you to move your head by causing muscle tightness and spasms. In some cases, you might even experience a headache.
Many cases of neck pain are temporary and usually resolve on their own with rest. If your pain is particularly great, Dr. Dennis might prescribe stronger pain-relieving medications or muscle relaxants to improve your mobility.
Many chronic cases of neck pain benefit from regular physical therapy as well. Dr. Dennis might prescribe physical therapy alongside initial medications to help ease you into your strengthening exercise routines.
Though neck pain rarely requires surgical intervention, Dr. Dennis might recommend this route if spinal cord compression or pressure on a nerve root causes your pain.
You don’t have to put up with neck pain for the sake of your job. Call the office of Steven C. Dennis, MD, in Newport Beach, California, to schedule your consultation or book online.