Neck pain can impact your entire life. Even simple tasks like driving, cooking, or walking down the street can become difficult if your neck hurts. And, unlike other types of pain that can worsen during specific activities or motions, neck pain can cause discomfort even if you are just sitting down. Finding the right kind of neck pain treatment for you is the first step to getting proper care.
What Causes Neck Pain?
The neck contains muscles, bones, nerves, and tendons. Discomfort can come from several different sources.
- Stress can cause tension in the muscles that support the neck, leading to soreness and stiffness.
- Improper posture is another pain trigger for neck muscles. For example, carrying a heavy school bag or leaning forward to look at your phone or computer for too long can cause neck pain. Your risk for pain and stiffness is higher if you perform any activity that requires you to hold your head and neck in the same position for an extended period.
- Trauma can cause neck pain. Accidents, sports injuries, or physical assaults can damage muscles, tendons, or the spine. However, micro-traumas can also lead to significant pain. For example, a minor fall or head bump can lead to a pulled muscle or pinched nerve.
- Whiplash is a sudden movement of your head; it usually occurs during an accident and can cause damage, leading to chronic neck pain.
How is Neck Pain Diagnosed?
Diagnosis is the first step in neck pain treatment.
Patients typically seek medical help when they cannot treat their neck discomfort with pain relievers, heating pads, and stretching.
Physicians usually ask patients to describe their neck pain, when it occurs, and its intensity during specific activities. They can perform a physical exam of pressure points to try and define the source of the pain. They may also order an MRI, CT scan, or X-ray to check for signs of internal damage.
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Neck Pain Treatment Options
Our neck pain treatment in Charlotte, NC, can focus on providing temporary relief while simultaneously dealing with the root cause of the discomfort.
- Painkillers and muscle relaxants can temporarily relieve acute symptoms, but they are not long-term solutions.
- Physical therapy involving strength exercises and stretches can restore proper balance to the neck. Specialized treatments like coordination and balance-correction therapy can also work.
- Electrotherapy can provide relief without the use of medication.
- Surgical intervention is usually the last result if the discomfort is debilitating and if all other neck pain treatments have failed.
What Type of Doctor Treats Severe Neck Pain?
Different practitioners can cure neck pain. Chiropractors, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, and physicians can all play a role in neck pain management.
A primary care provider will perform an initial exam, while a physical therapist or chiropractor provides non-invasive treatments. If surgery is required, a surgeon will perform the operation.
Contact Us for Neck Pain Treatment in Charlotte NC
Carolinas Pain Center offers the kind of multidisciplinary, individualized approach necessary for neck pain treatment. If you are suffering from chronic neck pain that will not go away with at-home treatment, make an appointment today to start on the path to neck pain relief.