Even Osteopaths get Neck Pain
(and associated headaches!)
A trampoline injury as a 6 year old is where it started for me. Bounce…bounce…BANG! I hit my face on the thick metal bar around the perimeter = fractured cheek bone, whopping black-eye.
This (according to my mum) caused a whiplash injury where your neck gets thrown backwards and forwards really quickly.
So for about as long as I can remember, I have had a sensitive and vulnerable neck. When it gets worse, eye headaches dominate my day.
As an Osteopath, this has actually been a blessing. It has helped with understanding the nitty-gritty parts of what our clients feel with their neck trouble.
Our practitioners ‘get’ what you are talking about when you say that it hurts in your shoulder, or your jaw, your eyes, or your head. We will look for the primary place your problem stems from and treat there while settling down the symptoms that are giving you grief.
It doesn’t matter if your issue is long-standing or just a few days old…we are trained to decipher your unique puzzle.
Do you work at a desk?
You are more likely to suffer from pain in the neck and across the shoulders simply because desk work encourages your upper back to become rounded and your head to jut forward on your neck. More muscular effort is needed to hold your head in this position, so the muscles in your neck, shoulders and upper back become tired and painful.
Long periods spent sitting in the same position can also lead to stiffness in the spinal joints in your neck. This posture has a close association with the development of headaches.
Stress and tension are often experienced through the muscles in the neck. We all know what is meant by “a pain in the neck”! But this may be more real than we think. So a stressful desk job almost always leads to stiffness and pain in the neck.
We have all seen the rounded neck and back posture which is common for you too! Lifting children, putting them in car seats, being a pack-horse carrying way too much in one go (groceries from the car to the house – sound familiar?). Alongside the daily emotional stress of caring for the little people in your life all places a lot of strain through the neck. In more serious cases, problems in the neck can lead to nerve compression, which produces pain, pins and needles and even weakness in the arms. Neck pain is generally worse amongst those who have stiffness in their upper back as the neck is more mobile and so tends to compensate for immobility further down.
Osteopathy may be the ideal treatment for all these problems. Tight muscles can be stretched and kneaded and stiff joints are mobilised by gentle rhythmical movements of the neck and shoulders.
Mobilising the spine further down your back also improve the condition of your neck, as reduced mobility in the spine can put undue strain on your neck.
A number of muscles originate in the neck and run down into your shoulders. Our treatment encompasses the whole area to ensure we get to the root of the problem. Often, tension in the neck can lead to headaches, and treatment of your neck should give you relief from these associated headaches.
Our Osteopaths offer advice on posture and stretches to ease the tension in tight muscles. At the end of an osteopathic treatment, you may feel a sense of lightness and freedom around the neck and shoulder area.
It is important to get the right diagnosis so you can receive the appropriate treatment for your specific condition. Osteopaths are able to differentiate the cause by taking a detailed history followed by a thorough examination of your movements.