[The article is intended for sharing my personal experience and the knowledge I have gathered on chronic neck pain over the years. It is not meant to diagnose or treat any underlying condition. Talk to your physician about your chronic neck pain.]
Neck pain has been a part of my life for the last 19 years. Given the fact that I was born with 2 extra ribs (cervical ribs) and had a condition called Thoracic Outlet Syndrome, it doesn’t get easier. Year after year, suffering from chronic neck pain has taught me a thing or two about this condition.
If you’re suffering from chronic neck pain, this is likely due to issues with the discs or joints in the neck. Several factors can lead to ongoing pain in the neck area, and it’s important to know how to manage and reduce this pain so you can improve your health and get back to doing the things you love.
Reasons for Chronic Neck Pain
If you have pain in your neck that won’t go away, one of the reasons is- you may be experiencing stenosis. This condition occurs when your spinal column narrows. Or, you could have chronic neck pain when your discs are inflamed, or there’s a breakdown of the neck discs. After speaking with your doctor or chiropractor, you may find that you’re experiencing ongoing pain due to rotator cuff tendinitis, rheumatoid arthritis, or polymyalgia rheumatica. If your neck bone was fractured in an accident, this could lead to nerve damage, which could be the cause of your intense neck pain.
Search a chiropractor in our city for your chronic condition. For example, If you live in or near Jonesboro, you can make an appointment with a neck & back pain chiropractor in Jonesboro, GA , to find practical ways to keep chronic neck pain at bay.
Tips for Getting Rid of Chronic Neck Pain
It is important to note that your treatment will depend on the cause of your pain. Be sure to speak with your doctor about any pain you’re experiencing so you can find a customized treatment plan that will work best for you. Suggestions for getting rid of ongoing neck pain include:
Your healthcare provider may prescribe medicine to help you manage daily pain. The medication can stop muscle spasms in your neck or keep nerve pain at bay. Your doctor may also prescribe medicine to reduce inflammation in the neck area. While you can get the medication in pill or liquid form to manage your pain, your doctor may inject medication into your neck when you visit the physicians’ office for an appointment. In most cases, the medicine you receive will be acetaminophen or an NSAID to reduce pain and inflammation.
This pain relief method can rid your neck nerves from the intense pressure that is causing discomfort. Your head is pulled gently from your neck for the traction method to stretch your ligaments and muscles to provide more room for your spine. Your doctor will let you know which traction is best to alleviate your neck pain. Unless you are instructed to do so by your healthcare provider, do not use a traction device at home.
Suggested read: Alternative Pain Management Methods- What Should You Know
If you use a traction device and it doesn’t work, you may want to consider surgery to eliminate the pain in your neck. Keep in mind that surgery doesn’t work for all types of pain, but it may be helpful if you need to remove a tumor from your neck or repair a bone in your neck area that has been fractured. Your doctor may also recommend surgery to make your spinal column wider or remove a disc between your neck bones.
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You must rest your neck as your doctor directs you. Try your best not to make any sudden movements and don’t turn your head too quickly. Your physician may also suggest that you wear a surgical collar for a few weeks. The collar keeps you from turning your head, which gives your neck time to heal if you injured your neck in an accident. Be sure to talk to your doctor to determine when you can return to exercising or sports activities after your injury.
5. Apply heat and ice
You can apply an ice pack to your neck for up to 20 minutes at a time every hour or as needed. If you don’t have an ice pack, put some crushed ice in a plastic bag and cover the bag with a towel before putting it on your skin. Ice keeps your neck tissues from becoming damaged and reduces pain. If you prefer the heat method, apply a warm compress to your neck for about 30 minutes every two hours or as needed. The heat helps to get rid of the pain but can also reduce muscle spasms.
If you do not have a heating pad, you can try standing or sitting under the shower and use the hot water as a heat source. Just be mindful of the temperature! Personally, heat works better for my neck and shoulder pain. The muscles feel relaxed, and I feel that some of the pain is managed by the heat.
You may have to use a combination of these methods to eliminate chronic pain in the neck area. Continue communicating with your chiropractor or physician so you can make changes to your treatment plan as needed and get rid of chronic neck pain for good.
Last but not least, keep a positive mindset and follow your doctor’s instructions. Having chronic pain is physically and mentally demoralizing & debilitating, but you can manage the condition better with a positive attitude and proper treatment.
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