Understanding Neck Pain

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Understanding Neck Pain

Neck pain or cervicalgia is pain that is generated from the cervical spine. It can include headaches, dizziness, shoulder pain, and upper back pain. Pain originating from the cervical spine can be felt from the base of the skull, into the neck, upper shoulders, and the upper back or shoulder blade region. The different structures and different cervical/neck joint levels can cause pain in different regions. The neck is comprised of 7 cervical vertebra or bones; these are referred to as joint levels C1-C7. Each of these neck bones is connected to the ones above and below by ligaments, spinal discs, and muscles. Injury to the different components causes pain in different locations.

Pain originating from the cervical spine can be felt from the base of the skull, into the neck, upper shoulders, and the upper back or shoulder blade region. The neck is comprised of 7 cervical vertebra; these are referred to as C1-C7. Injury to the different components (ligaments, disc muscle) causes pain in different locations. Here, the different colors show the area that injury to the different cervical joints will be felt in.

Abnormal neck curves can stretch and irritate the neck joints which may cause neck pain. Only spinal x-rays can show a Chiropractor what the state of your neck curve is. The abnormal neck curves, determined only by spinal x-rays allows us to determine the origin of the neck pain.

Cervicogenic pain affects a large part of the population. Those with abnormal postures and disc degeneration are more prevalent. Cervical pain can affect anyone. From studies on large populations, it is known that approximately 13.8% of people between the ages of 18-67 years of age will suffer cervicogenic type pain.

Studies have found women (9.4%-13.5%) are more likely to suffer from neck pain than men (7%-9.5%), Recent studies have found that up to 15% of initially asymptomatic people will experience the presence of cervical spine/neck pain over a 10 year period.

Contrary to popular belief, on average, cervicogenic pain does not improve on its own; once a person has experienced this type of pain the odds favor the recurrence of this pain. Thus, the cause of the cervicogenic pain should be sought and possible treatment intervention may prevent prolonged pain and improve future episodes if a direct cause is found.
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Dr. Brian Paris is a Doctor of Chiropractic (D.C.) and an Advanced Certified Distinguished Fellow of Clinical Biomechanics of Posture (CBP). He owns and directs Advanced Spine & Wellness Center, an integrative wellness center combingin structural corrective chiropractic, physical therapy and acupuncture. For more information visit us at www.parischiro.com or call 240-361-2225.

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Understanding Neck Pain

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This article was published on 2011/02/04