The pain may just be a mild transient nuisance, or it could be so excruciating that a person’s life becomes stalled as every neck movement becomes an agony.
In many cases, neck pain isn’t serious and goes away with a combination of rest and some over-the-counter pain killers. But chronic neck pain, which lasts for several weeks or longer, is most likely in need for medical attention. Regretfully, Bottom of Form
this kind of dragging pain often doesn’t just go away by itself as many sufferers would believe possible, but a comprehensive treatment plan can be the radical cure for it.
Chronic Neck Pain: Why It Happens
The neck is buoyed by seven vertebral bones. These bones, which are supported by muscles, ligaments and tendons, are separated by spaces that contain the intervertebral disks which have a cushioning role. Nerves that go to the muscles of your upper back and upper limbs extend between these spaces in your spine.
Among a long list of suspects, poor/wrong posture choices, injuries, arthritis, or the aging-related wear and tear are the most common causes leading to chronic neck pain.
With the progress in age, the disks that act as shock absorbers between the neck bones can start showing signs of wearing out. Gradually the intervertebral spaces start to narrow, with the bones starting to absorb stress, the ensuing bone friction can lead to development of bony spurs that press on nerves. Moreover, the intervertebral disks can also push out from between the bones and press on nerves, an ailment commonly known as herniated disk. Both; disc herniation and bone spurs can cause an agonizing blend of neck pain, pain around the back of the shoulder blades, in addition to arm complaints (pain, numbness, or weakness).These symptoms extend from the neck all through the way down to the fingers of the hands.
The condition may be associated with troubled sleeping and difficulty turning the head, which also can make driving dangerous.
This doesn’t mean that everyone, with age progression, will develop neck pain, but the wear and tear we put our spines through can eventually lead to degenerative spinal conditions.
Chronic Neck Pain: Fixing Things Right
Determining the best treatment plan will depend on the cause of the chronic neck pain and its extent. The good news is that non-surgical treatment of cervical degenerative ailments provides good to excellent results in over 75% of patients. Only in few cases, such as failed conservative treatment or advanced cases with severe nerve compression, surgery stands alone as the best treatment option for a radical positive outcome.
Approaches to relieve chronic neck pain include:
- Rest and pain relief. The treating doctor may prescribe anti-inflammatory pain medications and muscle relaxants to relieve pain and inflammation. Neck immobilization can be achieved using a cervical collar or braces; it’s most beneficial during acute exacerbations of pain by reducing motion at the symptomatic level.
- Physical therapy. This includes exercises to decrease muscle spasms that can contribute to the aggravation of pain, and strengthen the muscles that support the neck. Teaming-up between the treating doctor and an experienced physiotherapist, physical therapist, can boost your likelihoods for a better recovery. A combination of manual therapy and physical treatments (e.g. electrical stimulation, heat and cold, ultrasound, or traction) can do wonders in relieving pain and strengthening the neck muscles.
- As stated earlier, surgery is seldom necessary for neck pain. Nevertheless, when pain becomes a terrible agony that impedes life`s routine or when the nerve compression symptoms start to cause limb weakness, surgery becomes an option to consider.
Nowadays, minimally-invasive surgeries became the mainstay of surgical intervention and these have the great advantage of less pain, less scarring, faster recovery and quicker resumption of daily life activities.
Chronic neck pain can be a serious problem and has always been accountable for a considerable amount of disability and time lost from work. Associated emotional status and social stress can aggravate the situation, but the good news is that, for most people, chronic neck pain can be relieved through a personalized treatment plan designed and executed by a dedicated team of medical professionals.
If you are suffering from chronic neck pain, consult Dr. Stefan Matschke, the Orthopedic Surgery Specialist at German Medical Center- the best orthopedic clinic in Dubai. Dr. Matschke is an expert in providing personalized treatment for a range of musculoskeletal conditions, including neck pain.