Neck pain can range in intensity and feel achy or like an electric shock from the neck to the arm. It can also affect the shoulder and neck. There are various causes of pain in the neck besides underlying diseases. As an illustration, consider prolonged stooping (looking up or down), uncomfortable sleeping positions, stress, chiropractic adjustments, or wearing heavy jewelry. Find out how pain in the neck is treated in various ways.
Physical therapy is frequently incorporated into treatment strategies for chronic neck pain in order to increase neck flexibility and strength. Depending on the particular diagnosis and circumstance, the shape and duration of the physical therapy program may change. A physical therapist who has received formal training may be recommended to begin with several weekly sessions. Exercises that are recommended can eventually be done at home.
Neck pain is often treated with over-the-counter (OTC) pain relievers first, such as acetaminophen or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medicines (NSAIDs). If neck discomfort doesn’t go away, a doctor might short-term give harsher drugs such as:
- Muscle relaxants, or
- Prescription-strength NSAIDs.
To lower the risk of significant side effects, carefully read the directions on any drug before taking it.
Alternative Methods of Treating Pain in Neck
Although alternative or complementary therapies frequently lack the same level of rigorous scientific support, many patients have found success using them to address neck pain.
When it comes to neck pain treatment, the most common thing which might spring up in your mind is none other than a suitable massage session. Hence, before running to the treatment centers, most people try to stabilize their neck pain situation by asking for neck massages from their peers. Thus, if you are suffering from terrible neck pain recently, then it is advisable not to worry much and instead visit a spa for getting a professional quality beck massage for your convenience.
A chiropractor, osteopath, or another healthcare provider may modify the spine using their hands to increase mobility and lessen pain. While spinal mobilization uses procedures with a more constrained range of motion, spinal manipulation utilizes a high-velocity manipulation. To lessen the danger of uncommon but significant side effects like stroke, it is crucial to rule out any spinal instability or underlying medical condition before undergoing a high-velocity neck manipulation.
Depending on the type of discomfort and/or the pain’s presumed origin, a qualified acupuncturist inserts tiny needles into particular skin-surface locations. The idea behind using needles to treat neck discomfort is that unblocking blocked energy (qi) will aid in healing. Needles may be inserted in the neck or other parts of the body.
Meditation and mindfulness exercises can help the body relax, reduce pain, or offer the impression of having more control over the pain. There are numerous approaches, including controlled breathing exercises and diverting strategies.
Alternative therapies may be more tolerable for certain people than some medical procedures, especially for those who suffer from severe drug side effects.
Steroid injection into the cervical epidural
Cortisone steroid solution is injected into the cervical epidural space, which is the outer layer of the spinal canal, under the supervision of contrast-enhanced fluoroscopy (x-ray guidance). The intention is to lessen the inflammation of the tissues and nerve roots close by, which is typically brought on by a disc herniation or another form of spinal degeneration.
Radiofrequency ablation (RFA)
RFA may be taken into account if a facet joint is the pain’s proven source. In order to establish a thermal lesion that stops pain signals from reaching the brain, a specific needle is positioned close to the sensory nerve of the facet joint using fluoroscopy. RFA often offers more substantial assistance. According to one study, 30% of patients continued to feel better three years after receiving RFA.
Trigger Point Injection
Typically, no fluid is administered during these injections, and a very thin needle, similar to an acupuncture needle, is used. A very small quantity of local anesthetic may occasionally be used to assist soothe a trigger point or inflamed muscle bundle.
Neck pain is often treatable with self-care if it is not crippling and was not brought on by trauma. While it is recommended to refrain from excessive activities and motions for a few days to prevent pain, some mobility is usually encouraged to keep the neck from weakening and/or growing stiffer. Ice therapy helps ease pain and swelling. Heat therapy may aid in muscular relaxation and increase blood flow and healing nutrients to the affected area. Applications of cold or heat therapy should only last 15 or 20 minutes, with at least a 2-hour rest in between to allow the skin to heal.