Seeing a Chiropractor for Chronic Stiff Neck Pain vs. Taking OTC Medication
Experiencing a stiff neck every now and then isn’t unusual. You may have slept in a bad position, had a difficult day at work, or just been in the car for too long. However, if you suffer from chronic neck pain or a severely stiff neck that persists, it’s a significant medical issue that you need to address.
You might think over-the-counter medications are the solution. You pop a couple of painkillers or a low-dose muscle relaxant and you feel better, right? The anecdotal evidence may say yes, but the reality of painkillers is that they only temporarily address pain. Moreover, they’re associated with a great number of harmful side effects.
It’s for these reasons and more that many people turn to chiropractic for neck pain relief. The natural, holistic approach the chiropractic experts at Elevation Health in Salt Lake City, UT take offers a better way to address chronic neck pain both now and for the long-term.
What causes chronic neck pain?
Neck pain is usually tied to problems in the cervical spine, or the top portion of the spine. Being unable to rotate your head from side to side or feeling discomfort when you try to roll your head are clear indicators of stiff neck. And while it’s easy to diagnose this condition, it’s difficult to qualify, since it could be caused by any number of factors, including:
- Muscle strain or sprain;
- Pinched nerve;
- Sleep posture;
- Aggravation of an injury;
- Excessive stress.
Often, the focal point for stiff neck or chronic neck pain is the levator scapula, a muscle that connects your neck to the cervical spine. Damage to this muscle can cause a severely limited range of motion, tingling in the hands and wrists, and/or consistent pain.
What are effective treatments for neck pain?
Before you reach for the painkillers or even call your chiropractor, there are a few things you can try at home first. Putting an ice pack on the affected area for extended periods of time may provide some relief. It’s a great way to spot-treat pain instead of taking pills that can’t target any specific area of your body.
You should also check your pillow. Many instances of neck stiffness stem from lack of support while sleeping. A firm but comfortable pillow will help keep your spine neutral when you go to sleep. You might also want to try some light neck exercises and stretches before you go to sleep and as soon as you wake up.
If you’ve tried home remedies to no avail, chiropractic care may provide a long-term solution to addressing serious neck pain problems. A trained chiropractor will see how well you can move your neck, shoulders, and arms. He or she may also take X-rays to see if there are any deeper problems. Then, through comprehensive assessment, an adjustment schedule or lifestyle changes can be made to help alleviate your chronic neck situation.
Instead of living with the problem or popping another pill, why not try chiropractic? The experienced team at Elevation Health specializes in pain relief for stiff neck patients across the Salt Lake City, UT area. We use Chiropractic BioPhysics (CBP) to accurately pinpoint areas of stress and strain to your neck, to help you alleviate the condition.
If you’ve got a pain in the neck that persists, contact us today for a free consultation!
Chiropractic BioPhysics, or CBP, is one of the most scientific, researched, and results-oriented corrective care techniques. CBP-trained chiropractors aim to realign the spine back to health, eliminating nerve interference and addressing the source of pain, fatigue, and disease. As with all chiropractic care, CBP is gentle, painless, and non-invasive.