What is the cause of my neck pain / shoulder pain?
There are many reasons why people suffer from upper back/shoulder or neck pain. It can be poor posture, sedentary lifestyle, leaning over a computer (especially laptop), phone or hunching over a work desk. It can also be caused by wear and tear, incorrect exercise in the gym, injury or there could be underlying health issues that manifest itself as back or neck pain.
The most common causes of neck pain are:
- CC syndrome – Cervicocranial (Cervicocephalic) syndrome - pain and stiffness of the upper cervical spine with associated with headache, dizziness or visual / auditory disturbances.
- CB syndrome – Cervicbrachial syndrome - pain and stiffness of the cervical spine with symptoms in the shoulder and arm
- neck injury (fall, bang/hit, car accident/ whiplash)
- awkward sleeping position, unsuitable pillow
- forced incorrect posture at work (mechanic, dressmaker, hairdresser)
- slipped disc (disc prolapse / herniated disc)
- poor posture
- physical or mental stress
Common symptoms of problems originating in neck / cervical spine include:
- neck pain, general soreness
- neck / shoulders stiffness and tightness
- discomfort at night, hard to find comfortable position to sleep or rest
- restriction and difficulty moving the neck especially turning right/ left or tilting the head from side to side
- pins & needles, numbness or tingling in arms / hands
- pain starting in the neck and radiating down the arm
- muscle spasms
How can we help to relieve neck pain?
Depending on the full assessment and after establishing the cause of your neck or shoulder pain we might do a combination of following treatments. The choice of treatment will also depend on whether you have acute neck pain or chronic neck pain.
- using heat or hydrotherapy to relax the muscles
- soft tissue work and myofascial release including post-isometric relaxation (PIR) and Soft tissue release (STR) techniques
- trigger point release by manual technique or dry needling
- decompression / gentle traction
- exercises addressing tight and weak muscles
- breathing pattern correction
- scalp release
- electrotherapy / ultrasound
- ergonomic advise for work, sleep, activities of daily living and leisure activities