Neck pain, a common complaint among many people, can range anywhere from a dull and irritating ache to burning, debilitating nerve pain that may radiate down the shoulder and into the arm. There are also many causes of how the pain started and how long it may last. Although most neck pain can improve gradually with mild treatment at home, a licensed and trained neck chiropractor can offer more effective treatment for the cause of your pain.
You may be wondering what is the most common cause of neck pain? Because your neck is flexible and supports the weight of your head, it is vulnerable to injuries and conditions that cause pain and restrict motion. Some of the most common causes of neck pain include:
- Worn joints. Years of wear and tear due to just living life with all its bumps and spills will start to take their toll.
- Muscle strains. Caused by overuse of your muscles in certain positions, such as spending too many hours hunched over your computer or smartphone, reading in bed, or even gritting your teeth.
- Osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis causes the cartilage between your vertebrae to deteriorate, forming bone spurs that affect joint motion and cause pain.
- Nerve compression. The vertebrae of your neck can develop herniated discs or bone spurs, putting pressure on the nerves that branch out from the spinal cord.
- Injuries. Whiplash (when the head is jerked backward and then forward) is often the result of rear-end auto collisions.
- Diseases. Some common diseases associated with neck pain are rheumatoid arthritis, meningitis, and cancer.
To help prevent neck pain as much as possible, consider the following tips:
- Use good posture—your head centered over your spine.
- Take frequent breaks from long periods of sitting or standing.
- Adjust your desk, chair, and computer for the best posture.
- Don’t tuck your phone between your ear and shoulder.
- Quit smoking.
- Avoid carrying heavy bags with straps over your shoulder, such as large handbags, briefcases, backpacks, etc.
- Sleep in a good position—use a pillow to support your legs and back.
For help with neck pain, schedule an appointment with a specialized neck chiropractor at McKim Chiropractic. Our licensed and certified staff is committed to helping the families of Nampa, ID, and Caldwell, ID, live pain-free!