Updated: Jun 22
If you've been experiencing pain in your neck for a long time, you know it can be debilitating and difficult to deal with, especially if it's been around for a while. Making matters worse is that the more pain you experience over an extended period of time, the more likely it is that you'll become chronically disabled by it.
It can keep you up at night and make you irritated during the day. You no longer look forward to doing things or hanging out with the people you used to enjoy. You may even start questioning your overall health status. But don't worry. Our pain management NYC center is here to help. There are three easy steps that you can take to reduce and eliminate chronic neck pain.
Step 1: Find the Cause
First, you need to determine what might be causing your chronic neck pain. Chronic neck pain can happen over time or develop suddenly. Chronic pain can affect every aspect of your life, slowing you down physically and emotionally while also causing you to lose hope. This can happen when you're experiencing constant pain or pain that comes and goes.
Chronic pain is any kind of recurring pain lasting longer than three months. Although there are many different causes of chronic neck pain, it's not necessarily caused by an injury. The key is figuring out what's triggering your pain so that you can begin to treat the problem.
It's important to get an accurate diagnosis from a medical professional to know what might be causing your pain because there are several possible causes. The doctor will ask you about your symptoms and medical history. They may also perform a physical examination of the area to assess for muscle spasms or other issues. The doctor might also order X-rays or MRI scans to rule out more serious causes for your discomfort, such as bone infections or tumors.
Chronic neck pain can be caused by a number of things, including poor posture, muscle tension, and stress. It's also common for people to develop nagging aches due to their jobs or hobbies. For example, if you work at a computer all day or spend a lot of time playing video games, your neck may experience some discomfort.
Pain in the neck can be caused by many factors. By ruling out these possible causes, you can determine which treatment is best for your situation. Here are some of the most common causes of chronic neck pain:
Posture: The way you sit or stand can have a big impact on your neck. If you're slouching, that can strain muscles in your back and shoulders. If you're hunched over a computer all day, it can strain muscles in your neck and shoulders as well.
Arthritis: The cartilage that cushions the joints of your spine can wear down over time, causing bones to rub together and become inflamed.
Tension headaches: A tension headache is caused by tightness in the muscles of the scalp and neck area. You may feel a tight band around your head when you have this type of headache.
Injuries: If you've experienced a traumatic blow to your head or body, it's possible that you've injured your neck muscles and ligaments during the accident.
Stress: Stress is known to cause tension headaches as well as muscle aches throughout your body, including your neck. Stress could also be causing emotional issues that affect how you feel physically.
Step 2: Treat Your Pain
If you have been diagnosed with neck pain, it's important to take steps toward treating your condition as soon as possible. The longer you wait, the more likely it is that your symptoms will become worse.
Chronic neck pain is most often treated with physical therapy, anti-inflammatory medications, and other non-surgical treatments. Pain relievers may help temporarily but do not cure arthritis or other conditions that cause chronic neck pain. And surgery is rarely needed for people with chronic neck pain.
Try different types of treatments until you find what works best for you. Some non-invasive treatments -- such as physical therapy, acupuncture, and medical massage -- can provide relief, while others need minimally invasive procedures.
A certified physical therapist can recommend treatment options to help relieve your symptoms. In addition to helping with your pain, they'll teach you exercises that will help strengthen muscles in the area and give you relief from discomfort.
You may also want to consider visiting a chiropractor for treatment if you have chronic neck pain. Chiropractic care can help reduce chronic neck pain symptoms by restoring proper spine and joint alignment.
Other treatments for chronic neck pain include corticosteroid injections which may be used to treat neck pain caused by an irritated nerve root or spinal disc herniation. Corticosteroids are injected directly into the affected area, causing inflammation that reduces stiffness and relieves muscle spasms.
Step 3: Make Lifestyle Changes
If you're already seeing a medical professional for chronic neck pain, there are steps you can take at home to manage your condition. The best thing you can do when it comes to managing chronic neck pain is to make changes in your daily life so that you avoid aggravating the problem area.
Certain activities may aggravate your condition or make it worse. For example, if you have arthritis in your neck, making repetitive motions with your head may cause additional inflammation and pain. Avoid activities that may increase your symptoms, such as bending over or looking down at objects for prolonged periods of time.
It's important to make changes that can help prevent future episodes of chronic neck pain. For example, if you have a job that requires prolonged sitting or standing, consider ways to improve your posture or take short breaks throughout the day.
Practice good posture by standing straight with shoulders back and relaxed arms hanging at sides; sitting straight with feet flat on the floor and back supported; lying down on a bed or couch with head slightly elevated (not flat). Don't slouch while sitting or standing, as this can put a strain on the muscles of your neck and upper back.
When you're experiencing chronic neck pain, it's important to maintain good posture and use proper ergonomics when you're working at a computer or sitting in front of the TV or computer screen for long periods of time. Avoid slouching at all costs! Sitting with proper posture can help ease tension in your neck muscles.
Regular exercise is another way to ease tension in your neck muscles and help relieve chronic neck pain. Try doing yoga or Pilates if those types of exercises appeal to you. If not, try walking or swimming instead — any type of exercise will help reduce stress on your body and ease tension in your neck muscles.
Your body needs rest and recovery time to heal from injuries and everyday wear and tear. So if you're experiencing chronic neck pain, it's important to address the underlying cause.
Experiencing chronic neck pain is never fun, and if you're suffering from it, you should seek treatment as soon as possible for the most effective outcome. There are a number of steps you can take to relieve neck pain, and finding a qualified pain management NYC professional who can provide you with a customized treatment plan is also important.
Each individual case of neck pain is different and will require its own personalized course of treatment. Taking the right steps towards healthier, more flexible neck muscles and less pain overall is important. Once you have addressed the root cause of your pain, it will be easier to recover from and manage your neck pain from here on out. All it takes is patience, a positive mindset, and plenty of rest.