The most common neck problems I see in practise are:
1.Chronic Neck and Shoulder Stiffness.
Often due to poor posture, driving or computer use and exacerbated by stress. Can sometimes lead to tension-type headaches. Osteopathic treatment can help relax the muscles, stretch the joints and ease the symptoms. Exercises may also be prescribed. If your problem is chronic and related to your lifestyle you may benefit from regular treatment to prevent the build-up of symptoms.
2. Acute Neck Pain.
In layman’s terms the ‘cricked’ neck. Patients may wake up with acute pain and restriction of neck movements. In some cases the pain may radiate down the back or into one arm. Painful but seldom serious, this responds well to osteopathic treatment including massage, neck manipulation and mobilizing exercises and will usually resolve within one or two sessions.
3. Cervical Spondylosis.
This is osteo-arthritis of the neck joints. Symptoms usually start in your 50′s and may lead to progressive loss of mobility (often noticed when driving). Regular treatment may be helpful and exercises are vital to prevent muscle weakness and fatigue. Caught early enough, this condition can be managed effectively.
4. Brachial Neuralgia.
This is often known as a ‘trapped nerve’ and is caused by compression of one or more of the nerves in the neck. Pain radiates along the distribution of the nerve and so is usually felt in the arm or hand. It can also cause numbness, weakness or pins and needles. The pain can be very intense and relentless and can be very distressing for sufferers. This condition can be slow to respond but with correct treatment including traction it usually resolves within a few weeks. I sometimes use medical acupuncture in addition to manual treatment to help with the pain.
© Justine Knowles 2012