Your neck is a complicated structure, and there are a variety of common injuries it is susceptible to. They can be mild or they can be severe, but they’re all a pain in the neck! Here’s a list of some of the more common neck injuries.
Kink in the Neck
You know the drill for this one. You go to bed and wake up with a little “crick” in your neck after sleeping in an awkward position. They can also be from working on the computer for a long time or sudden movements of your neck. No doctor or chiropractor is every going to give you an official diagnosis of a “kink in the neck”. Usually the discomfort you feel is due to muscle spasm, trigger points or arthritis, and maybe even a disc problem. If the pain lasts longer than a week you should see a chiropractor about it.
A strain is an injury to muscles that move the spine. They can happen in the neck, but more often happen in the lower back. Bending over at the waist when lifting a heavy object is the most common way to cause a muscle strain. The symptoms for this include muscle spasm, reduced flexibility and pain. If this type of pain lasts longer than a week or interrupts your usual activities, see your chiropractor.
Sprains are injuries to ligaments, which are the bands of connective tissue that hold your bones together. These types of injuries can be caused by falls or sudden twists that overload or overstretch the joint. Repeated stress to the joint can also cause a sprain. If you get a sprain you will have swelling, reduced flexibility and pain. A sprain can mild, moderate or severe. If you think that you or someone you come into contact with has a neck sprain it can be very serious. Mild and moderate sprains may not need to be checked out by a chiropractor or other medical professional, but severe sprain absolutely requires it.
An injury in which your head is thrown back and then quickly forward, like in an automobile accident, can cause whiplash. This even may result in a strain or sprain of your neck, but it can also damage discs and joints, which may then irritate nerve roots and even the spinal cord itself. If you have a whiplash injury, see your chiropractor as soon as symptoms begin, which can be a couple days after the incident that caused the injury.
If you think of your discs in your back like jelly donuts, when a disc herniates all the jelly comes out. If the “jelly” lands on a nerve root this can cause some serious pain, though you may also feel weakness, numbness or pins and needles down your arm.
If you’re new to the world of chiropractics, one of the biggest questions you may have is how to select the best chiropractor. Have no fear! There’s a lot to know about the world of chiropractic care, but it’s not that difficult to decide what will best fit your needs. Read on to find out how you can find the right chiropractor for you!
Where to Start
The best place to start is by asking your primary care physician. You may not realize that medical doctors and doctors of chiropractic often work in tandem, in order to provide the best care to patients as possible, so you primary care doctor should be able to recommend someone competent and trustworthy.
Asking friends, co-workers and neighbors is also a great place to start. With so many locations to choose from, I’m sure that more than one acquaintance or friend has been to the Joint and can tell you how fabulous the doctors are! Make sure to take advice from others with a grain of salt, though. At the end of the day you have to find someone that you are comfortable with who will meet your specific needs.
It is a perfectly acceptable thing to call up a chiropractic office and ask for an appointment just to meet and “interview” your potential chiropractor. You can also do this by phone if you‘re comfortable with it. This way you can learn more about the chiropractor, the techniques they employ and about the clinic at large. Feeling comfortable is going to very important as you go forward, so make sure to go with a chiropractor where you feel comfortable with their practice and location.
Questions you may want to consider asking a potential chiropractor are what their specialty, if any, may be, and how many years they have been practicing. You’ll want to note if you feel they are courteous and if they answer any questions you may have fully and completely. Don’t be shy – ask whatever you need in order to get what you want. Make sure to ask about the techniques they use too!
While the chiropractic philosophy is shared by chiropractors, there are still different techniques they may use or specialize in that you will want to research and ask about. Some doctors perform joint manipulation only with their hands while others use instruments as well. Also, some chiropractors prefer firm manipulation while others may have a softer touch. Finding the right chiropractor for you is going to be about details like this.
The Joint is a great place to start finding out more about chiropractic. The staff and doctors are here to help you and want you to have the best experience you can. So call today and find out more about what our chiropractors have to offer!