Osteopathy is an effective non-invasive treatment for acute neck strain
Suffering Neck Pain?
How Osteopathy Effectively Treats Neck Pain
Osteopathic treatment decreases the inflammation and improves mobility of the neck in order to decrease the pain surrounding the discs nerves and muscles of the neck. This can be done successfully by soft-tissue massage, gentle articulation and mobilization of the joints of the spine and stretching of the muscles in spasm surrounding the spine.By improving mobility and decreasing the inflammation, the neck heal at a quicker rate.
Osteopathic treatment will decrease the recovery time, enabling the patient to get back on their feet quickly. The gentle manual treatment provided by the osteopath reduces the muscle spasm, inflammation, and nerve pressure, the primary pain producers. Osteopathic treatment aids in the prevention of scar tissue formation around the disc, a factor associated with recurring back pain.
Osteopathy and stiff necks
A stiff neck is often caused by soft tissue injuries of the neck. The soft tissues that may be involved are ligaments, muscles and tendons of the neck. Muscles and ligaments which are supposed to protect the cervical (neck) vertebrae can become overstretched causing injury and inflammation. This can then develop into a stiff neck. The cause of these injuries may be, for example, a blow to the head or a road traffic accident. Poor head and neck posture may also cause the the neck liable to injury and become stiff.
How posture effects neck pain.
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Symptoms of a neck strain
There is usually pain and tenderness around the injured neck due to muscle spasm of the affected muscles, attempting to brace the injured area.
Neck strains may also give symptoms of:
- Neck pain, that gets worse with movement
- Shoulder pain and muscle spasms
- Neck stiffness and difficulty moving the head
- Tingling sensations or weakness in the arms
- Headache, especially in the back of the head
- Difficulty sleeping
First Aid for a stiff neck
Use an ice compress as soon as possible for 10 minutes to reduce inflammation of the stiff neck. Take a break from icing for 10 minutes and repeat 3x. This can be done every 2-3 hours for the first 2 days.
If required one can take anti-inflammatory tablets for pain control and to reduce inflammation. Always consult one’s family doctor before taking anti-inflammatories especially if one has an ulcer or sensitive stomach.
The patient can also support his / her neck using a neck brace but this should be used for short periods of time and is not a long term treatment.
How can an osteopath relieve neck pain and stiffness?
The osteopath will treat a stiff neck very gently. In order to reduce the neck spasm and stiffness, the osteopath will treat the soft tissues and joints of the neck using various hand-on techniques (eg. traction, massage and joint manipulation).
The osteopath will also advise on exercises to maintain flexibility.