Neck Pain

Neck pain is an incredibly common problem that we see regularly in our clinics. It affects people of all ages and can range from small acute occurrences which resolve quickly, to severe chronic injuries which can be present for life. In fact, neck pain is so common that in 2008 (Childs et al.) stated that at any give time 10% to 20% of the population reports neck complaints. In addition, 54% of the population would have a neck problem in the last 6 months.

 

So, what causes neck pain?

There can be many different causes for you experiencing your neck pain. As a result, this is an important question we need to ask, as the different causes will lead to differences in your treatment and management options.

To determine what the possible cause may be, you can expect to be asked a wide range of questions relating to your injury. When did it occur? How did it occur? Was there any trauma involved? How long have you been suffering from the injury? Do you have any headaches associated with your neck pain? Along with a thorough physical examination, your history and any investigations will be considered to provide you with a diagnosis.

 

Some of the common neck conditions are:

 

Joint related

  • Facet joint sprain
  • Degenerative joint disease (DJD)

Disc related

  • Disc herniation
  • Degenerative disc disease

Nerve/Referred pain

  • Thoracic outlet syndrome
  • Cervical radiculopathy
  • Nerve pain
  • Fibromyalgia

Muscle related

  • Neck muscle strain
  • Whiplash
  • Cramps
  • Delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS)

Headaches

  • Cervicogenic headaches
  • Tension headaches
  • Cluster headaches
  • Migraines

Bone Related

TMJ/Jaw related

  • TMJ pain/dysfunction
  • Temperomandibular joint disease (TMD)

Arthritis

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References:

Childs, J.D., Cleland, J.A., Elliott, J.M., Teyhen, D.S., Wainner, R.S., Whitman, J.M., Sopky, B.J., Godges, J.J., Flynn, T.W., Delitto, A. and Dyriw, G.M., 2008. Neck pain: clinical practice guidelines linked to the International Classification of Functioning, Disability, and Health from the Orthopaedic Section of the American Physical Therapy AssociationJournal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy38(9), pp.A1-A34.