Neck pain is a relatively common complaint, and could be caused by a variety of things; from poor posture to a herniated disc. For the most part, it’s unlikely to be anything sinister, and most neck complaints are easily resolved with physical therapy, manipulation and minor medical procedures.
Here are a few of the most common causes of chronic neck pain:
Chronic Neck Pain: What’s Causing it?
- Neck Arthritis. If the pain is more pronounced at the start and end of the day, it may well be a sign of neck arthritis. The condition is caused by the degeneration of the cartilage in the joints, and it’s far more common in people over the age of 60. The symptoms can be improved with motion exercises and manipulation.
- Herniated Disc or Foraminal Stenosis. Generally, neck pain caused by a herniated disc or foraminal stenosis is relatively easy to identify, as it will often be accompanied by tingling in the arms (and possibly hands). The pain is a result of pinching of a nerve in the neck. It’s relatively easy to treat; and in most cases, can be eradicated with physical therapy and manipulation.
- Cervical Foraminal Stenosis. Commonly referred to as ‘wear and tear’ in the neck, cervical foraminal stenosis takes many years to develop, and is caused by repetitive activities (such as sport) or positioning (sitting awkwardly at a desk). In this instance, medical treatment may be advisable, and is likely to include injections and medicine to reduce pain. In severe cases, surgery may be advisable.
Seeking Help for Chronic Neck Pain
It is important to seek medical help for your neck pain as early as possible. Many neck complaints are degenerative and become harder to treat the longer you leave it.