Neck Pain (Neck Injuries)

Neck pain or stiffness is very common among all age groups which affects the quality of life in many different ways. There are many causes of neck pain, including muscle strain, injuries to joints, nerves and ligaments, congenital disorders, and age-related diseases. Hence, it is very important to make an accurate diagnosis to provide appropriate treatment. It is always vital to treat neck pain early, since it can cause chronic movement dysfunction which can be more challenging to treat later on.

The common neck pain causes include:

Cervical Spondylosis

Cervical spondylosis (neck spine arthritis) is one of the most common cause of neck pain in the elderly population. As you age, most people develop some degree of wear and tear in the cervical spine leading to spondylosis. The other causes include, prolonged poor posture, injuries to spine, overuse of spinal joints, and excessive body weight. Pain and stiffness in the neck are the usual early symptoms, however few people might be symptom-free for a long time.  Although severe cases may require surgical treatment, most people will respond very well to physiotherapy and exercise-based treatment.

At MoveFree Physio we provide individualised exercise program to help spondylosis by:

  • Restoring muscle strength and flexibility
  • Increasing spinal joint mobility
  • Increasing blood circulation to promote natural healing
  • Improving postural awareness, core control and joint position

Cervical Spinal Stenosis

Spinal stenosis is a narrowing of the canal or the foramen within the vertebrae of the spinal column that results in too much pressure on the spinal cord and/or nerve roots. Spinal stenosis is common in men and women over 45 years of age, often results from a gradual degenerative ageing process of the spine. However, it may also occur in the younger population with a narrowing of the spinal canal at birth or as a result of injury to the spine.

In cervical stenosis, the spinal nerve roots in the neck are compressed causing pain, tingling, weakness or numbness that radiates from the neck into the shoulders, arm and hands, especially with activity.

Most of the mild to moderate level of spinal stenosis responds well to physiotherapy. The treatment for spinal stenosis is aimed at reducing pain and numbness, restoring normal spine range of motion, restoring strength and flexibility of spinal muscles, increasing quality of life and preventing a recurrence.

Cervical Radiculopathy

The cervical radiculopathy is commonly referred to as a pinched nerve, when the nerve comes off the spinal cord, causing pain, weakness or numbness spreading down the arm. This physical compression of the nerve can be due to a number of reasons including:

  • Bulging or slip disc
  • Bony growth (osteophyte) at the edge of the vertebra
  • Spinal stenosis
  • Tumor in the spine

Radiculopathy symptoms may also be specific to the nerve root involved.

  • C5 nerve root: Weakness in the deltoid and upper arm muscles; shoulder pain and numbness
  • C6 nerve root: Weakness in the biceps muscle and wrist muscle; pain and numbness on the thumb side of the hand
  • C7 nerve root: Weakness in the triceps muscle; pain and numbness in the back of the arm and the middle finger
  • C8 nerve root: Weakness with the hand grip; numbness in the little finger

Most of the mild to moderate level of radiculopathy responds well to physiotherapy. The treatment for cervical radiculopathy is aimed at reducing pain and numbness, restoring normal spine range of motion, restoring strength and flexibility of the muscles, increasing quality of life and preventing a recurrence. The spinal decompression therapy (Traction) is quite useful in treating radiculopathy. At MoveFree Physio we provide spinal decompression therapy using modern technology.

Slip Disc or Bulging Disc

Slip disc or protruding disc occur when the cushion-like cartilage (the disc) in between the vertebrae is torn, and the central core (Nucleus Pulposus) of the disc leaks. Slip disc can occur at any part of the spine, cervical (neck), thoracic (upper and mid-back) and/or lumbar spine (lower back).  Slip disc can be caused by a sudden trauma or by long-term pressure on the spine. People aged between 30 to 50 years are most commonly affected by slip disc. Repeated lifting, poor posture, sedentary life style and obesity are some of the risk factors for herniated disc.

The majority of the slip disc do not require surgery and it responds well to physiotherapy. The treatment for slip disc is aimed at reducing pain, restoring normal spine range of motion, restoring strength and flexibility of the muscles, increasing quality of life and preventing a recurrence. The spinal decompression therapy (Traction) is quite useful in treating slip disc. At MoveFree Physio we provide spinal decompression therapy using modern technology.