The Most Common Causes of Neck Pain
By Sara Butler
Your body is an incredibly designed machine, but it does have some weak links – your neck being one of them. Your neck is susceptible to injury for a few reasons, so if you are one of the millions of Americans who suffer from neck pain and stiffness every year there can be several reasons why. Here are some of the most common reasons your neck may hurt and how your chiropractor can help.
Your neck is also known as your cervical spine. It starts at the base of your skull and is made up of seven vertebrae. This part of your spine supports the full weight of your head, about 12 pounds. It also moves your head in several different directions – part of what makes it so susceptible to injury and pain.
Another reason it can become injured or cause you discomfort is biomechanics. If you find yourself sitting for long periods of time, making the same movements over and over again, having an accident, it can lead you straight to pain.
Causes of Neck Pain
There are several ways you can injure your neck, but the most common causes of neck pain tend to be due to:
- Accidents or injury – Any time your head or neck is moved suddenly with force in any direction, you can injure your neck. Whiplash from automobile accidents is a common rebound injury of the neck, with the sudden stopping and subsequent rebound of your head damaging the muscles and other soft tissues in your neck, leading to pain and muscle spasms.
- Getting older – This one can’t be helped, but aging definitely plays a role in the health of your neck.
- Osteoarthritis – This is a common disorder of the joints caused by normal wear and tear as you age. The cartilage between the bones in your neck deteriorates and impacts its range of motion.
- Spinal stenosis – This is a condition in which the passageways in which the nerves in your spine live become smaller and smaller, trapping or pressing on the nerve roots and causing pain.
- Degenerative disc disease – This condition causes the discs between your vertebrae to lose their ability to absorb shock because they become less pliant. This can cause a herniation or bulge in the discs and lead to painful symptoms.
If you suffer from neck pain your chiropractor may be able to help. The first step is to make them aware of the pain you’re suffering from, so discuss it with your chiropractor during your next adjustment at The Joint Chiropractic.