Articles on neck pain

Back & Neck Pain - Mckenzie's Approach

Dr. David Kirubakaran, Physiotherapist
Back pain and neck pain are very common in this computer era because of our sedentary life style.  Even youngsters and mid age people are not spared from spinal issues because of their poor exercise habits and nature of jobs.Robin McKenzie, a reputed Physiotherapist from New Zealand classifies the cause of spinal problems into three types. 1) Derangement –Pain caused due to changes in the position and fluid imbalance in the spinal discs.2) Dysfunction -Pain and restriction of movement caused by tightening of the soft tissues around the spine. 3) Postural syndromes– Incorrect postures that induces stress on soft tissues leading to pain  Back pain lasting more than 3- 5 days,or if the pain radiates down the back of thighs and legs, needs immediate intervention. Also, prolonged neck pain may radiate down the arms and hands,finally leading to numbness. Surgery was the only option for these types of spinal problems in the past. Hot, cold and electrical modalities can provide a temporary pain relief. But modern physiotherapy which includes manipulation of spinal joints can replace the surgical option. Manipulation is a “hands on technique”where the physiotherapist treats the affected part of the spine gently manipulating the transverse process (part of the spinal bone).  McKenzie Approach is the widely used technique in the western world. This type of approach requires active participation of patients along with the guidance of a physiotherapist.  Active participation mainly includes spinal extension type of exercises (backward bending) and sustaining in that position for a while.                                               The main goals of this type of manual approach program are: To rule out the cause of radiating pain down the legs or other areas.To bring the spine to its normal position.To avoid re-occurrence rate.Reduce the frequency of visits to clinic and the expense.Carry out the exercise program by patients themselves and obtain a pain free lifestyle.Manipulation along with McKenzie exercise regimen can effectively cure the patient’s spinal problems.

Neck Pain

Dr. Apoorva Kumar, Spine Surgeon
What is cervical spondylosis?Cervical spondylosis, also known as cervical osteoarthritis or neck arthritis, is a common, age-related condition that affects the joints and discs in your neck. It develops from wear and tear of the cartilage and bones found in your cervical spine, which is in your neck. While it’s largely due to age, it can be caused by other factors as well.According to the Mayo Clinic, the condition is present in more than 85 percent of people over the age of 60, although some people who have it never experience symptoms.For some, it can cause chronic, severe pain and stiffness. However, many people who have it are able to conduct normal daily activities.Cervical spondylosis causesUnfortunately, the bones and protective cartilage in your neck are prone to wear and tear that can lead to cervical spondylosis. Possible causes of the condition include:Bone spursThese overgrowths of bone are the result of the body trying to grow extra bone to make the spine stronger. However, the extra bone can press on delicate areas of the spine, such as the spinal cord and nerves, resulting in pain.Dehydrated spinal disksYour spinal bones have discs between them, which are thick, pad-like cushions that absorb the shock of lifting, twisting, and other activities. The gel-like material inside these disks can dry out over time. This causes your bones (spinal vertebrae) to rub together more, which can be painful. According to the Mayo Clinic, this process can begin around age 40.Herniated disksThe spinal disks can develop cracks, which allows leakage of the internal cushioning material. This material can press on the spinal cord and nerves, resulting in symptoms such as arm numbness and sciatica.InjuryIf you’ve had an injury to your neck, such as during a fall or car accident, this can accelerate the aging process.Ligament StiffnessThe tough cords that connect your spinal bones to each other can become even stiffer over time, which affects your neck movement and makes the neck feel tight.OveruseSome occupations or hobbies involve repetitive movements or heavy lifting, such as construction work. This can put extra pressure on the spine, resulting in early wear and tear.Risk factorsThe greatest risk factor for cervical spondylosis is aging. Cervical spondylosis often develops as a result of changes in your neck joints as you age. Disk herniation, dehydration, and bone spurs are all results of aging.Factors other than aging can increase your risk of cervical spondylosis. These include:neck injurieswork-related activities that put extra strain on your neck from heavy liftingholding your neck in an uncomfortable position for prolonged periods of time or repeating the same neck movements throughout the day (repetitive stress)genetic factors (family history of cervical spondylosis)smokingbeing overweight and inactiveSymptomsMost people with cervical spondylosis don’t have significant symptoms. If symptoms do occur, they can range from mild to severe and may develop gradually or occur suddenly.One common symptom is pain around the shoulder blade. Patients will complain of pain along the arm and in the fingers. The pain might increase when:standingsittingsneezingcoughingtilting your neck backwardAnother common symptom is muscle weakness. Muscle weakness makes it hard to lift the arms or grasp objects firmly.Other common signs include:a stiff neck that becomes worseheadaches that mostly occur in the back of the headtingling or numbness that mainly affects shoulders and arms, although it can also occur in the legsSymptoms that occur less frequently often include a loss of balance and a loss of bladder or bowel control. These symptoms warrant immediate medical attention.When to see a doctorIf you have the sudden onset of numbness or tingling in the shoulder, arms, or legs or if you lose bowel or bladder control, talk to your doctor and seek medical attention as soon as possible.If your pain and discomfort start to interfere with your daily activities, you may wish to make an appointment with your doctor. Although the condition is often the result of aging, there are treatments available that can reduce pain and stiffness.Testing and diagnosingMaking a diagnosis of cervical spondylosis involves ruling out other potential conditions, such as fibromyalgia. Making a diagnosis also involves testing for movement and determining the affected nerves, bones, and muscles. Your primary care physician may treat your condition or refer you to an orthopedic specialist for further testing.Physical examYour doctor will start by asking you several questions regarding your symptoms. Then, they will run through a set of tests. Typical exams include testing your reflexes, checking for muscle weakness or sensory deficits, and testing the range of motion of your neck. Your doctor might also want to watch how you walk. All of this helps your doctor determine if your nerves and spinal cord are under too much pressure.If your doctor suspects cervical spondylosis, they will then order imaging tests and nerve function tests to confirm the diagnosis.Imaging testsX-rays can be used to check for bone spurs and other abnormalities.CT scans can provide more detailed images of your neck.MRI, which produces images using radio waves and a magnetic field, helps your doctor locate pinched nerves.In a myelogram, a dye injection is used to highlight certain areas of your spine. CT scans or X-rays are then used to provide more detailed images of these areas.An electromyogram (EMG) is used to check that your nerves are functioning normally when sending signals to your muscles. EMG measures your nerves’ electrical activity.A nerve conduction study is used to check the speed and strength of the signals your nerves send. This is done by placing electrodes on your skin where the nerve is located.Treatment optionsTreatments for cervical spondylosis focus on providing pain relief, lowering the risk of permanent damage, and helping you lead a normal life. Nonsurgical methods are usually very effective.Physical therapyYour doctor might send you to a physical therapist for treatment. Physical therapy helps you stretch your neck and shoulder muscles. This makes them stronger and ultimately helps to relieve pain. You might also have neck traction, which involves using weights to increase the space between the cervical joints and relieve the pressure on the cervical discs and nerve roots.MedicationsYour doctor might prescribe certain medications if over-the-counter drugs don’t work. These include:muscle relaxants, such as cyclobenzaprine, to treat muscle spasmsnarcotics, such as hydrocodone, for pain reliefanti-epileptic drugs, such as gabapentin, to relieve pain caused by nerve damagesteroid injections, such as prednisone, to reduce tissue inflammation and subsequently lessen painSurgeryIf your condition is severe and doesn’t respond to other forms of treatment, you might need surgery. This can involve getting rid of bone spurs, parts of your neck bones, or herniated disks to give your spinal cord and nerves more room. Surgery is rarely necessary for cervical spondylosis. However, a doctor may recommend it if the pain is severe and it’s affecting your ability to move your arms.Home treatmentIf your condition is mild, you can try a few things at home to treat it:Take an over-the-counter pain reliever, such as acetaminophen or an anti-inflammatory drug such as Advil or Aleve.Use a heating pad or a cold pack on your neck to provide pain relief for sore muscles.Exercise regularly to help you recover faster.Wear a soft neck brace or collar to get temporary relief. However, you shouldn’t wear a neck brace or collar for long periods of time because that can make your muscles weaker.OutlookCervical spondylosis is a common, often age-related condition that can cause stiffness, discomfort, and headaches related to neck pain. Your doctor may not be able to reverse the condition, but they can often recommend conservative treatments to help you overcome the discomfort and pain. 

Pokémon Go and Neck Pains – What Do You Know?

Dr. G P Dureja, Spine and Pain Specialist
The one thing that affects people of all ages is a neck pain. It doesn't matter if you are a teenager or a senior, neck pain affects everybody. No matter what your pain is derived from, it is important that you find a good neck pain treatment to help you reduce some of your symptoms. Why Pokémon Go players are at riskNot with standing content neck, Pokémon Go players are in peril of stumbling and falling by strolling while looking their telephones. Try not to get so wrapped up in the amusement that you are not watching where you are going, particularly on occupied lanes or walkways. At last, genuinely in-your-face players might put themselves at danger for shin supports in the event that they are strolling a great deal more than expected. Look at this article about perceiving and treating shin supports from the pain healing centers like Delhi Pain Management, which deals with Sports-well being.Perceive how to avoid neck pain from mobile gaming To prevent the agony of the disease one must know what the ailment is actually. More to that change in lifestyle is a must to do. What is content neck? A hardened neck regularly is the consequence of muscles debilitating after some time from poor stance or abuse. A hardened neck is regularly described by soreness and trouble moving the neck,particularly when attempting to turn the head to the side. A hardened neck may likewise be joined by a migraine, neck torment, shoulder torment and/or arm torment, and cause the person to turn the whole body instead of the neck when attempting to look sideways or in reverse. By a wide margin the most well-known reason for a firm neck is a muscle strain or delicate tissue sprain, and specifically the levator scapula muscle is helpless to damage.Pokemon go and neck painThe amusement is being commended for its medical disadvantages as players put in hours and walk miles looking for Pokémon to catch.How to stay away from the adversities:•Hold your telephone at a higher point. •Take breaks. •widen your neck. •Tuck your jaw down, and then gradually raise it upward. At that points wivel your head more than one shoulder, then the  other.It is essential that you find a good pain management program in order to help you get the pain relief you deserve. Too often are people reliant on just trying to take drugs to cover up and mask the knee pain, however, they don't treat the root of the problem. Focusing on treating the underlying cause of you pain is essential to finding the relief you need

Sleeping Positions to Relieve Back and Neck Pain

Dr. Vishwas Virmani, Physiotherapist
For most people suffering with back and neck pain, sleep may not be as pleasant. To better deal with such dilemmas, it is helpful to understand and know what you can do to alleviate your condition and prevent further damage. With proper guidance and a proactive attitude, you don’t need to simply manage the condition, but improve it.Back Pain Sleeping PositionsBack pain can be triggered by a number of reasons such as osteoarthritis, cervicalgia, degenerative disc disease, spinal stenosis and sciatica, to name some. The best determine which sleeping position will work best for you, you need to know what is the underlying cause of your back pain.• Supine PositionThere are no rules when it comes to sleeping, but there are certain guidelines that you can follow to ensure a more comfortable sleep. If you prefer to sleep on your back, it is advisable to place a pillow underneath your knees, and another one under the small of your back. In this position, gravity can force the back to arch abnormally.If you have sciatica or low back pain, sleeping in this position can be a challenge. So be sure to provide support on your back and beneath the back of your knees to alleviate any pressure on the lower back. A good variation of this position is to lie on your back but with both knees slightly bent• Prone LyingThis refers to lying on your stomach. In this particular position, gravity forces your back to arch towards the stomach. This can be uncomfortable for people with low back pain. To best accommodate this position, place a pillow under the stomach. This will effectively prevent your back from arching too much.• Side LyingNow, if you prefer to sleep on your side, then that’s a good thing. Most experts consider this as the best position for people with back pain. However, keep in mind that you will still need pillows for support, one placed between your knees and under the waist. This position is best adapted by people who are in the inflammatory stage of pain, where even the most minimal movement can trigger pain.

Pain Management: Why Is It Important

Dr. G P Dureja, Spine and Pain Specialist
Most of the people suffer from different kinds of pain because of various reasons. Most of the people also tend to ignore it and move on. It is not advisable to ignore pain because you don’t know if that is casual or something serious to pay attention to. Avoiding pain will only make it worse, so it is essential to manage and treat pain. What is pain management? As the name suggests, managing your pain in a way that either it is treated or relieved, is pain management. It is also a branch in medicine called Pain Medicine, which involves in-depth procedures and techniques to ease out the pain. What are the types of pain?Majorly pain can be classified into two types, acute and chronic. Any pain that is short lived or short lasting comes under acute pain while, any pain that is long lasting or forever, comes under chronic pain. Chronic pain generally is the pain that lasts for 3 or more months. Based on, where, in the body, the pain is present, there are further three types. Somatic This type of pain is more like an exterior pain. Caused generally by the activation of receptors on the body surface or musculoskeletal tissues, it can be treated with proper rest and medication. Surgical pain comes under this type. Visceral Internal pain caused due to damage to the organs or tissues is known as visceral pain. This is not localized to just one body part. It might pain in different organs or body parts. Neuropathic Pain related to the spinal cord or peripheral nerves is called neuropathic pain. It generally occurs at the level or below the level of injury. How can you manage pain?Managing acute pain is easier than chronic. You can involve in a healthy lifestyle and physiotherapy but for advanced management and care, there are pain hospitals that manage pain well. These healthcare facilities are established especially to diagnose and manage chronic pain. What are the kinds of pain that can be treated?Various kinds of chronic pain can be treated in pain hospitals such as cancer pain, back pain, knee pain, neck pain, arthritis, fibromyalgia, migraine, etc. What are the treatments available? There are various treatment procedures that are involved in treating pain. These can be simple and complex both. It truly depends on upon the kind of pain you are suffering from. Some pain needs just lifestyle modification and counseling to be treated while the others require more complex treatments. Treatments like X-Ray guided injections, intrathecal pump implants, radiation therapy, Botox therapy and Platelet rich plasma therapy are some from a several more. These treatments can be very effective when performed by experts.