Cervical Spine

Acute Neck Pain

Acute neck pain can be caused by various factors such as sleeping position, poor posture for prolonged periods, repetitive poor postures, or increased stress. Typical symptoms include pain in neck, shoulders, the base of the skull which can increase with movement. Other symptoms include tingling or numbness in the hand or down the arm. Short Term Goal: Restore pain-free ROM. Long-Term Goal: Postural awareness in standing and sitting/working, increase scapular and neck stabilization.

The cervical disc is made of a jelly-like substance used as a cushion between the vertebrae of the spine. Surrounding the disc is a tougher outer ring called the annulus. When the disc becomes herniated it pushes up against or through the annulus. The annulus pushes against sensitive nerves from the spinal cord or nerve roots. Herniations can cause pain in the head, neck, or arms and symptoms can include pain, numbness, and tingling. Goal: retrain the cervical spine with correct postures, improve cervical ROM, improve postures in sitting and standing, increase scapular and neck stability.

Cervical Sprain or Strain

Excessive force on the cervical spine can cause a strain or overloading of the muscle/tendon. Symptoms can also be caused by other diagnoses such as stenosis or cervical disc herniation. Common causes of sprain or strain usually caused by poor posture, awkward positions at a desk, poor ergonomic workspace, or whiplash injury. Strains affect muscle and tendons, while sprains occur in ligaments. Typical symptoms include sharp pain, pain with movement, and stiffness. Other symptoms can include headaches, burning, and pain in shoulders. Short-Term Goal: Restore ROM, decrease inflammation. Long-Term Goal: Decrease STRs in neck musculature, improve posture, increase scapular and neck stabilization.

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