Neck pain is said to affect roughly 25% of people at some point within each calendar year. The severity can range from mild symptoms to debilitating pain. Many people will be told their problem stems from degenerative changes within the spine. This can result in a variety of treatment options and opinions for how to fix the underlying problem. Our physical therapy in Durham, NC, specialize in fixing the root problem causing neck pain with a variety of conservative treatment approaches.
As stated above, many of our clients are diagnosed with degenerative changes in the cervical spine that are said to cause their neck pain. However, with the correct treatment approach matching the underlying problems nearly all people with neck pain can avoid surgery and manage the pain conservatively.
Over the years we've learned that most people with neck pain will be limited in these movements:
It is also extremely likely that the elbow, forearm, or wrist will be affected as well.
While we don't expect you to know what all of these movements are, the point we want to make is that neck pain is rarely just a "neck problem". The shoulder, mid-spine, elbow, forearm, and wrist are generally part of the underlying problem that needs to be addressed for a long-term pain solution.
All of these problem can be assessed and diagnosed with a thorough movement assessment.
Conditions we treat
Not all of our clients have been given a diagnosis for their problems. If that sounds like you then our physical therapists will show you what's causing your neck pain and help you understand what needs to be done to fix the underlying problem.
However, here are some of the common diagnoses we treat conservatively:
All of our treatment options are conservative in nature. We use a variety of techniques that are designed to address the pain and fix the underlying problem. Some of these techniques include; Myofascial release, dry needling, Mckenzie Method, IASTM, SFMA, and a detailed understanding of pain science which we believe is critically undervalued in traditional healthcare.
Contact Kaizen Physical Therapy today to learn more about the shoulder pain treatment options we offer to patients in the Durham, NC, area.
You may require an X-ray or MRI if there was a traumatic injury that caused your neck pain. For example, a sports collision, car accident, or a fall. An X-ray or MRI will be useful in this case to rule out a fracture, tear, or other condition that requires immediate medical attention.
You likely don't require an X-ray or MRI if there was no traumatic injury. If your neck pain is something that has gradually become worse over time then an X-ray or MRI is rarely necessary.
In fact, plenty of research shows that an X-ray or MRI, in this case, can lead to unnecessary surgical intervention trying to fix something that wasn't the cause of the pain in the first place.
A full-body movement assessment can identify what's causing the neck pain if there was no trauma.
Stretching for neck pain is typically a short-term pain solution. The muscles feel tight and the immediate assumption is that a tight muscle needs to be stretched.
However, we find that nearly all tight muscles are tight because they are weak (or somewhere nearby is weak).
This occurs because a tighter muscle is a stronger muscle.
Instead of stretching try strengthening. When done correctly, this is the solution nearly everyone needs.
Most people who have neck pain did not suffer a traumatic injury.
If there was no injury then it's very likely neck pain is caused by a combination of stiff and weak joints and muscles.
A full-body movement assessment should be performed to identify the root cause of neck pain. Many times the area that hurts is not where the root problem of the pain is occurring.
This movement assessment must include:
This really depends on what your idea of a solution looks like.
If you want to avoid surgery, pain meds, and cortisone injections then a physical therapist should be your first option.
Neck pain is generally muscular if there are some movements that are painful and others that aren't.
For example, if looking up hurts but looking down doesn't. This is a sign that your neck pain is likely muscular in nature.
Muscular pain is also typically felt as a 'dull ache' unless you perform a sudden movement that is an irritant (then it can be a sharp pain).
Wondering if our physical therapy clinic is the right approach for your problem?
All information on this website is intended for instruction and informational purposes only. The authors are not responsible for any harm or injury that may result. Significant injury risk is possible if you do not follow due diligence and seek suitable professional advice about your injury. No guarantees of specific results are expressly made or implied on this website.