3 Things That May Be Causing Your Neck Pain

3 Things That May Be Causing Your Neck Pain

Neck pain is more than just a pain in the neck. It’s something that affects the functioning of your entire body, and it can leave you drained from the effort of fighting it.

That’s where we at Coastal Pain Medicine come in. Our medical director, Patrick Brennan, DO, and our staff offer a number of minimally invasive and regenerative therapies to treat your chronic neck pain, no matter what its cause. 

Neck pain can be the result of any type of trauma to the cervical spine, whether it’s due to a car accident, a degenerative disease, or anything in between. Here are three common causes for chronic neck pain.

Whiplash

Whiplash is a soft-tissue injury. It occurs when your head and neck are sharply jerked backward and then forward, putting extreme stress on the cervical spine. The most common reason for a whiplash injury is a rear-end car accident, but it can also occur due to falls or fights.

Whiplash symptoms might develop immediately following the incident, or they may take a few hours or even days to appear.

Some of the most common symptoms include:

Neck pain

The pain typically results from soft tissue sprains or strains, but it may arise from injuries to the spinal vertebrae, discs, nerves, or joints. It can range anywhere from mild to severe, and it may be located in one general area or radiate (travel) down your shoulder into your arm and/or hand. 

Neck stiffness

Reduced range of motion may result from pain, muscle tightening, or a mechanical problem with a damaged joint.

Headache

Separate from the neck pain, you may experience head pain from neck muscle tightening or an irritated nerve that refers the pain into the head.

Shoulder and/or upper back pain

As with headaches, if the soft tissues of the neck are torn or strained, they can refer the pain to other soft tissues, in this case the nearby upper back and shoulders.

Herniated discs and degenerative disc disease

Between each pair of spinal vertebrae reside soft intervertebral discs that absorb shock when you move and prevent one bone from rubbing against another. Discs, though, aren’t indestructible. 

If you injure your spine or if you experience age-related degenerative disc disease, the outer disc shell can rupture, and the inner contents can spill out into the spinal canal. There, they press against nerve roots and cause pain. 

If the herniation is in your cervical spine, you’ll feel the pain in your neck. In addition, you may feel radicular pain, pain that travels along the nerve whose root is compressed and, along with numbness, tingling, and weakness, extends into your arm and hand.

Tech neck

Tech neck isn’t a medical term, but it’s an accurate description for a condition caused by modern living. Specifically, it refers to a repetitive stress injury caused by muscle strain from keeping your neck and head tilted forward and looking down at your smartphone, tablet, or other device.

You may experience:

The best thing you can do to alleviate tech neck is to set up an ergonomic workstation, where your screen’s at eye level, your feet are flat on the floor, and your back is against a chair back with a lumbar support.

Coastal Pain Medicine offers a number of treatments to help your neck pain. Depending on the underlying cause, your treatment plan may include:

We also offer holistic therapies like acupuncture, which helps promote better blood circulation for natural pain relief.

If you’re experiencing neck pain, come into our Pompano Beach, Florida, office for an evaluation with Dr. Brennan and for an accurate diagnosis. To schedule, call our office at 954-833-8552, or book online with us today.

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