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How does neck motion work?
The neck itself is made up of seven vertebrae with disks in between each vertebrae, a multitude of joints between each vertebrae, and muscles and ligaments. The vertebrate themselves allow for neck motion and also protect the spinal cord as it runs down from the brain into the rest of your body.
When should I see a physician for neck pain?
Someone should see their physician if they’ve actually received a blow to the head and they have neck pain. Any numbness or tingling, any shortness of breath, chest pain, anything like that and you should contact your physician immediately.
How can I help alleviate my neck pain?
There are some simple exercises that you can do to alleviate neck pain. Postural exercises are very important in the neck because improper neck posture can often be one of the main causes of pain. A simple technique to remember to align your head and your neck and shoulder is to keep the breast bone up. If you keep your breast bone up, the neck and the head will automatically balance itself out bringing the ears over the shoulder.
What are some exercises I can do?
Some simple exercises you can do to maintain your range of motion for your neck are simple rotation side-to-side, bring your chin toward your left shoulder as far as you can go without pain, and then immediately reverse the direction and bring it to the right shoulder, again, without pain. Make sure you do a high number of repetitions of this in a pain-free range of motion and a high number of repetitions of this would be 15 to 25.
Another thing you can do is what we call a chin tuck. You want to pretend that your head is on a shelf, you’re going to slide that head back on the shelf, making a nice double chin and that will help to strengthen some of the deep neck flexors which were been shown in studies to actually decrease neck pain once they have been strengthened.
If I do need to see a doctor, what would my visit entail?
He will do a subjective and objective examination of your neck when you visit him in his office. Your physician may refer you to a specialist for treatment or you may be referred to a physical therapist.
For More Information
To learn more about Sharp's rehabilitation services or to find a Sharp-affiliated physician who can refer you to a physical therapist, call 1-800-82-SHARP (1-800-827-4277), Monday through Friday, 8 am to 6 pm. To find general information about rehabilitation, visit Rehabilitation in Adult Health or read the Rehabilitation News archive.