We often don't pay much attention to our necks as we go about our everyday lives, but when our necks begin to hurt, they're all we can think about. Even moderate neck pain can impact routine activities by limiting mobility and range of motion.
Physical therapy is an excellent, non-invasive solution for patients struggling with ongoing neck injuries and pain. Read more about common neck injuries and how you could benefit from PT for neck pain.
Our necks are complex structures vulnerable to injury because of their awesome, dynamic mobility and length. They contain muscles, tendons, ligaments, vertebrae and nerves that contribute to our movements and can be injured with the wrong move or a sudden accident. Below are the five most common types of neck injuries:
Sprains and strains are damages and tears to your neck's soft tissues, including muscles, ligaments and tendons. These injuries often result from hyperextension due to sudden movements from impact, like sports activities or car accidents. Whiplash is a common term for these injuries.
These are usually minor injuries caused by holding your neck in an awkward position for too long. They can result from things like sleeping in a weird position, using the wrong pillow or holding a poor posture while working.
Your neck has seven cervical vertebrae, each with a soft disk that cushions the bones and absorbs impacts as you go about your routines. When one of these disks becomes damaged, the soft, jelly-like interior can leak out or bulge, causing significant pain and pressure on nearby nerves.
Herniated disks often occur from usual wear and tear or sudden injuries like falls. You can also cause a herniated disk when you lift something especially heavy without support.
Your nerves travel throughout your body through your spine, but when bones, tissues or tendons push up against the nerves in your neck, you may feel pain in your neck, shoulders, back, arms or hands. Nerve pinches can result from any other injuries listed on this page, including herniated disks, arthritis or sprains and strains.
Neck injuries like osteoarthritis and degenerative disks can occur naturally as we age. Our cervical disks and vertebral cartilage wear down over time, narrowing the spaces in the spinal column and compressing our spinal nerve roots. These injuries result in bone spurs and pinched nerves, which can cause pain.
Physical therapy for neck injuries is one of the most common non-surgical treatment options for reducing pain and regaining mobility. These programs may include posture therapy, traction stretches and other physical therapy exercises for neck pain that stretch and strengthen your neck muscles.
Treatment through physical therapy can improve your posture, mobility and strength, which will help resolve any pain or existing injuries and prevent future ones from occurring.
At Blue Sky Therapy, our experienced physical therapists work with you one-on-one to create personalized programs to heal your neck injury, reduce your pain and get you back to your daily life. If you're ready to find out more, you can contact our team online or use our locator to find a clinic near you and schedule an appointment.