(253) 200-9779
Tacoma Chiropractor >    Factors that Can Lead To Upper Spine Aches and Holistic Care that Might Be Helpful
Factors that Can Lead To Upper Spine Aches and Holistic Care that Might Be Helpful
5220 Pacific Avenue
Tacoma, WA
98408


(253) 200-9779



Factors that Can Lead To Upper Spine Aches and Holistic Care that Might Be Helpful

Your cervical spine, commonly referred to as your neck, is made up of seven vertebrae. Your ?neck? begins at the base of your skull. Your neck is what holds your head upright, which actually weighs several pounds ? this is quite a job. And while your cervical spine possesses a great deal of flexibility, allowing movement in many directions, this very same flexibility renders it prone to injury and pain.

This sensitivity is due to the neck's biomechanics. Some factors that can affect your neck's health are: injury, sitting for long periods, and side effects associated with aging ? to name a few. Regardless of the reasons, cervical pain can present considerable discomfort.

The following are contributing factors to neck pain?

1. Accidents and injuries: Whiplash, for instance, can damage the tissues that are supporting the head and neck due to its abrupt rebound effect. The ?rebound? results from muscles that react to strain by constraining themselves. This contraction leads to muscle fatigue, stiffness, and pain. Serious cases of whiplash are associated with intervertebral injury in the joint, or impaired nerve roots, muscles, discs, or ligaments. Whiplash is commonly associated with car accidents.

2. Aging Issues: Disorders that have a degenerative origin can present themselves as spinal stenosis, age-linked disc problems, and osteoarthritis. Such conditions negatively affect the spine.

Spinal stenosis narrows the nerve passageways in the vertebrae, making it contract and block nerve roots and thus, impair the nerves. As well as neck pain, spinal stenosis may negatively affect the arm and shoulder, bringing numbness and pain to these regions.

The intervertebral discs? elasticity and height is affected by a degenerative disc disease. A bulge or hernia may occur in a disc, causing tingling, numbness, and arm pain.

Progressive degeneration of cartilage occurs with osteoarthritis, a common condition. The way the body responds is to form bone spurs, and affecting joint motion.

In addition, some routine habits can exacerbate problems with the cervical spine. Obesity and poor posture, for example, alters spinal balance and forces the neck to compensate by leaning forward. Stress and emotional issues cues the muscles to compress and tighten, which in turn, creates pain and stiffness. This type of stress on the spine can create permanent cervical pain, which then impairs the upper back and arms.

A chiropractic doctor performs exams and investigates your reported symptoms in an effort to locate the exact source of the pain. The chiropractor may ask questions regarding the amount of time you've had the discomfort, what remedies or tactics you've tried, whether other parts of your body are affected, and what, if anything, helps to alleviate the pain. Physical and neurological exams will also be conducted. The physical exam will disclose your range of motion, posture, and general physical shape while noting the kind of movements that bring pain. The doctor of chiropractor will manually assess your spine's (and possibly, your shoulder's) condition to see its alignment, curvature, and possible muscle spasms.

The focus of the neurological exam is to check for reflexes, muscle strength, and the extent and reach of pain. There are cases where other tests might be needed in order to properly diagnose your condition. X-rays, for instance, may reveal bone spurs, fractures, and the likes of a contracted disc space. An axial tomography scan, in the form of CAT or CT scan, or a magnetic resonance imaging test, known as a MRI, shows where a dilated disc may take place. Your chiropractor may also suspect that nerve damage is causing the pain. An electromyography (EMG) can help in such cases, as it can assess how well the nerves respond.

Neck Adjustments: Neck adjustments usually translate into manual adjustments of the joints on the neck. This type of neck adjustments effectively improves the mobility of the spine, restoring range of motion. These adjustments can also increase the amount of movement of connecting muscles. Patients receiving cervical adjustments report an increase in their ability to move their heads, as well as less soreness, stiffness, and overall pain.

Expert opinion encourages the employment of spinal manipulation; it's considered beneficial to patients with chronic neck pain. Thorough clinical tests have shown that patients with chronic neck pain experienced marked improvement of their symptoms as a result of spinal adjustments. All the trial groups responded to treatment, showing improvement for weeks after treatment.

Each patient receives an individualized program care that may include different types of treatment. Such complementary approaches like massage, rehabilitative exercises, and mobilization of the treated area could also be recommended. When you contact your chiropractic doctor; you'll be on your way to receiving solid treatment for your neck issues.

Call a Chiropractor in Tacoma

(253) 200-9779