Recognize the symptoms of neck pain, the silent threat that is close to you
Center : Nakornthon Absolute Spine Care
Article by : Dr. Sittipong Suttiudom
Neck pain can be caused by a variety of reasons. But most often it is caused by the musculoskeletal system. Especially people who must sit and work in front of the computer for a long time. Most often, neck pain is relieved with a soothing massage. If there is severe pain, pain radiating down the shoulder, down the arm and shoulder, there is also weakness. It may be caused by bone spurs pressing on nerves. Herniated disc compressing nerves or spinal cord which is considered a dangerous neck pain You should consult a doctor asap.
What is a neck pain?
Characteristics of the neck consists of 7 cervical vertebrae arranged in a row. Between each vertebra there is a cervical pillow, ligaments and muscles attached between the bones. Within the vertebrae there is a spinal cord and nerves. There are also muscles that surround it. The cervical vertebrae can move with their joints connected to each other which can move in bending, tilting, turning the head.
Neck pain is a common symptom. especially in the working age and the elderly especially the working age group. From various activities in work, especially work that involves a lot of movement of the neck. May increase the likelihood of neck pain. Especially those who sit in the office who must bend up and down or having to work on a computer monitor and having to work typing keyboards, looking down at the documents on the table, interspersed with the screen for hours. Doing the same activities for a long time which, if done with the wrong posture will cause neck pain.
Neck pain that causes patients to see a doctor may have occasional pain or have chronic pain for several months if the pain comes from the muscles, it usually is not much of a problem, since it is often related to activities. When resting, it can alleviate and mostly disappear on its own. But if the pain in the neck gets severe, it may be caused by various reasons, such as bone spurs pressing on the nerves Herniated disc compressing nerves or spinal cord.
The main causes of neck pain
- Degenerative cervical vertebra as a result of aging and heavy neck use in some professions
- History of neck injuries such as tendons and muscles around the neck. Previous history of neck trauma may result in chronic neck pain later, herniated disc fracture or nerve compression.
- The muscles around the joints are inflamed for various reasons. For example, from inflammation in patients with joint diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, gout, or spinal infections.
- Neck use or activities that is unhygienic, such as sleeping with the head in the wrong position, activities that require frequent stooping or turning the head by the neck muscles.
How to relieve a sore throat?
- Pain relievers - The medication will be administered based on the severity of the symptoms. If the pain in the neck is not very severe , it may be relieved by taking common painkillers initially and observe symptoms.
- Physical therapy and gentle massage in the area of pain, such as using a hot compress or the use of topical ointments to relieve muscle aches can do it yourself with a physical specialist to give advice
- Wear a soft collar once diagnosed, neck should not be moved too much. Reducing neck movement can help ease neck pain.
When to see a doctor
When you notice that you have pain on your neck, or shoulder for an unusually long time. Especially when neck pain persists for more than 2 weeks, even after following the initial recommendations not getting better. Patients should consult a specialist to determine what causes such neck pain.
Although most neck pain can be treated with medication and physical therapy. But in some cases, patients may not know how severe the symptoms are. Some people have neck pain, although not much, but may find that a herniated disc is pressing on the spinal cord or nerve. In some cases, when coming to the doctor late when the disease is more severe, such as having weakness, paralysis, muscle atrophy, unable to work with hands. Inability to control fine motor activity of the hand inability to control the functioning of the finger muscles, such as picking up a drop, holding the glass and the glass often spills out of water, etc.
In these case, if the nerve compression is severe and prolonged, receiving treatment that is too late, it may be difficult to revert back to the way it was before or in the case of some invasive diseases such as tumors in the spine or having a spinal infection, it can become more severe and more difficult to treat.
If you have these symptoms You should see a doctor asap.
- Pain in the shoulders, arms, shoulder blades, for example, when turning the head, there will be symptoms like electric shock or numbness or burning in the arm or hand, or a change in sensation.
- There is weakness in the muscles of the arms, legs, or unusual muscle spasms.
- Move your neck less than usual and has severe pain when moving
- A neck deformity, such as a slanted neck, a deformed stooped neck, or an abnormal lump in the neck area.
- Symptoms are associated with other disorders, such as high fever, tenderness, and severe neck pain. or with weakness.
- Has a history of accidents directly occurring in the neck or a blow to any part of the body that results in strong neck movement followed by neck pain, arm numbness, hand numbness, forearm or hand weakness. Pain, tingling, electric shock to the arm, etc.
However, neck and shoulder pain, if left for too long, the disease may intensify until it affects quality of life. So if you have symptoms, you should see a doctor to get a proper diagnosis and appropriate treatment guidelines.