Causes and Symptoms of a Stiff Neck

by admin on March 12, 2015

If you find it difficult to move your head from side to side, and have soreness in the neck as well as pain the arm or shoulder and a headache, you may be suffering from a stiff neck. Many people with a stiff neck find it easier to turn their entire body if they are trying to look to the side or behind them, to avoid the neck pain and soreness.

The pain can vary from mild and annoying to extreme, limiting movement and everyday functions. Dr. Werner says “the cervical spine is able to mend itself easily and quickly, most bouts of neck pain or soreness don’t last much longer than a week or so.” However, medical treatment or chiropractic care may be needed in some extreme cases of a stiff neck.

Causes and Symptoms of a Stiff Neck

The following are the most common causes of a stiff neck and the resulting neck pain:

Muscle Sprain and Strain

A strain or sprain is the most common cause of a stiff neck, especially spraining of the levator scapula muscle, which is at the back of the neck and connects the spine with your shoulders. The 3rd and 4th cervical nerves have the task of controlling this easy to damage muscle. It is easy to strain the levator scapula muscle by various routine and everyday activities, including the following:

  • Straining the neck muscle by sleeping in a particular position
  • Slouching in front of a computer screen, which can lead to poor posture
  • Tension in the neck caused by too much stress
  • Strains caused by injuries from playing sports
  • Swimming the front crawl, or any other activity that means that the head is repeatedly and quickly turned from side to side
  • Cradling a telephone between your shoulder and neck for a long period, or any other abnormal position can cause strain on the neck
  • Disorders of the cervical spine

A stiff neck can be caused by various disorders of the cervical spine. Because the nerve paths and structures in the cervical spine are all connected to each other, muscle stiffness or muscle spasms can result from a problem in one single area. As an example, neck stiffness or soreness can be caused by cervical osteoarthritis or a cervical herniated disc.

Houston Chiropractic Treatment for a Stiff Neck

If you have pain or stiffness in your neck for over a week, it is highly recommended that you seek medical treatment and pain relief. If you experience neck stiffness after a traumatic injury or experience other symptoms such as high fever, seeking medical help is strongly recommended. In most cases, you will find that your stiff neck can be treated effectively in just a few days. Chiropractic Care is often a valued solution for Houston residents suffering from Neck Pain.

Previous post:

Next post: