Don’t let a pain in the neck keep you from enjoying fitness in 2020
The new year is a great time to try a new fitness routine, like CrossFit or Pilates. Many eager exercisers try too hard to keep up with others, however, and can hurt their back or neck. In fact, neck injuries seem almost inevitable, when you consider the interconnected muscles, bones, joints, tendons, ligaments, and nerves in the neck. Any of these can be injured, and damage to one part of your neck often indicates damage to other parts.
The severity and types of neck injuries vary widely. Some symptoms include:
Achy, stiff muscles
Pain radiating to your shoulders or head
Headaches or dizziness
Intense pain or the inability to move your extremities, usually due to severe neck trauma. (A related condition is thoracic outlet syndrome, which occurs when the nerves or blood vessels in the thoracic outlet are compressed or irritated.)
Muscle strain or tension from spending too many hours on your computer, sleeping in an awkward position, or overdoing it during exercise
Worn joints due to age
Nerve compression from herniated disks or bone spurs in your neck’s vertebrae
Injuries from car accidents
Diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis, meningitis, or cancer
Treating Neck Injuries
You can usually self-treat mild to moderate neck pain and plan to feel better within two to three weeks. If you’re still in pain, your doctor might prescribe stronger pain medications and muscle relaxants. Other treatment could include:
Surgery to relieve root or spinal cord compression
On-Demand Physical Therapy and Neck Injuries
Physical therapy is also highly effective in treating neck injuries. Your PT can help you develop techniques to ease your pain. This starts with an evaluation to determine the cause and severity of your injury. Then you’ll receive a personalized plan to stretch and strengthen your neck. Your plan may include postural training, light exercises, cold or heat application, massage, or one of the treatments listed above.
And with on-demand physical therapy, you can get all the benefits of PT wherever you are—no need to further strain your neck by driving to a clinic. Your on-demand PT will set up exercises perfectly tailored to your actual environment and can even modify your regular workout. Whether you self-select PT or your physician refers you, give Luna on-demand physical therapy a try!