Physical therapy is available for many different ailments. Many seek pelvic floor therapy, hand therapy, and sports injury rehabilitation. Neck pain can be tricky to treat because sometimes you feel the pain up in your head or down in your shoulders and arms. Nevertheless, physical therapy can help treat neck pain, and the outcomes may be as good as or better than you would receive from other treatments.
Causes of Neck Pain
Neck pain can result from expected wear and tear on the body that causes conditions such as osteoarthritis or degenerative disk disease of the cervical spine. It can result from overexertion of the neck muscles and joints due to repetitive movements or poor posture. It can sometimes result from a traumatic injury, such as whiplash from a car accident. Some causes of neck pain, such as disk herniation, can result from either a degenerative condition or trauma.
Sometimes another structure, such as the herniated portion of a ruptured disk, may put pressure on the nerve roots that extend out from the spinal cord in the neck. This results in cervical radiculopathy, in which the pain starts from the neck and shoots down into the arms. Neck pain can also contribute to migraine headaches. Fortunately, neck physical therapy is available as a treatment for all of these issues.
Excellent Treatments Dedicated to Neck
Many treatments for neck pain involve either treating the symptoms or performing invasive procedures. Physical therapy addresses the source of the problem to reduce the pain in a non-invasive way.
Neck-specific physical therapy exercises may involve either stretching or strengthening the neck. Stretching exercises help prevent your neck from becoming stiff and increase its flexibility. These can be performed several times a day, and your therapist will teach you how to do them correctly so you can do them on your own.
The goal of neck strengthening exercises is to improve your posture. When you hold your neck in an awkward position, whether too far forward, too far back, or off to one side, it can put strain on your muscles. Strengthening exercises help you to hold your head in an anatomic position. Your therapist will tell you how often to perform these exercises. To avoid overworking the muscles, you typically start out doing them every other day.
How To Find Your Next Physical Therapist
When it comes to Sanford physical therapy, you have many choices. Because neck pain can be complex, you might want to ask whether the therapist has previous experience treating conditions of the cervical spine. You can consult with the American Physical Therapy Association to confirm the credentials of any physical therapist you are considering seeing, or to find a specialist in neck pain if you think that would be of benefit.
North Carolina is a direct access state, meaning that you do not need a referral from a physician to see a physical therapist. Nevertheless, you may want to ask if your primary doctor wants to recommend someone. You can also ask for recommendations from friends who have had physical therapy for neck pain.
Do your due diligence when choosing a physical therapist for neck pain.