Friday, June 18, 2010

A Pain in the Neck

Chances are that at some point, you've had a stiff neck when you woke up in the morning. We say things like, "I think I just slept wrong," and for a little stiffness that might be true. But when it persists, something more serious is at work. Long-term pain or joint stiffness of any sort isn't something that should be ignored; if for no other reason, we shouldn't ignore it just so it doesn't get worse.

There are a ton of causes for a stiff neck or neck pain (in the event that the problem escalates) that we regularly encounter at Living Well Medical in NYC.

One of the most common injuries that can lead to chronic neck stiffness is a whiplash injury. We've all heard of it - you get into an accident, your head gets jerked back and forth brusquely and you feel it right away. It's a recipe for neck pain and stiffness that's all too familiar to people in New York. We regularly treat whiplash patients using the latest in non-surgical technologies.

Another common cause is arthritis; this broad group of degenerative disorders has a way of making us feel "creaky" in our joints, stiff and achy, particularly during shifts in the weather. As structures within the joints break down, a neck that was just stiff can become chronically painful. Although there is no cure for arthritis, it can be effectively managed with physical therapy and exercise, among other treatments.

Of course, disc problems are also something we encounter with neck pain in NYC. A herniated disc can press against spinal nerves leading to serious pain.

One of the factors that often gets overlooked as a contributor to neck stiffness is sleep posture. Just like the way you sit at your desk can cause problems if not balanced, if you sleep in a mechanically incorrect position, the strain on joints begins to add up and pain and loss of range of motion can result. It can have a big effect on daily living.

At Living Well Medical in NYC, we use a variety of non-surgical therapies to stop neck problems - chiropractic, Active Release Technique and Spinal Disc Decompression just to name a few. If a stiff or painful neck won't go away, give us a call at 212-645-8151, and let us help you feel like yourself again.

-Dr. Steven Shoshany, NYC Chiropractor