At one point or another, almost everyone will experience neck pain. More often than not, it will last for a couple of days, disappear all on its own and not return. However, there are some cases when neck pain comes and doesn't improve. It might linger for days, weeks, or even months. Most sources of neck pain are everyday habits or occurrences that add up to cause discomfort.
When neck pain begins to linger and affect your everyday life, most people start looking for relief options. While the majority of neck pain is simple and will respond to home remedies like heat, stretching, etc., it's important to understand when to seek help and where to go.
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Your neck is a well-engineered combination of bones, nerves, blood vessels, ligaments, muscles, and tendons. The neck has to be a balance of strong and flexible. It needs to work to carry the weight of your head (10-13 pounds in an average adult) and also needs to have the capability to allow for movement in all directions. The neck is sometimes referred to as the cervical spine. The cervical spine houses and protects the brainstem and spinal cord, which relay messages between the brain and the rest of the body.
One part of your cervical spine is designed completely differently than the rest, and that's the part that connects your spine with your skull. This area is known as the upper cervical spine, and your atlas (C1) vertebra is the one responsible for bearing the weight of the head and also allowing for the majority of its motion. The bones that sit at the very top of the neck are shaped differently to allow for this freedom of movement to take place. Because they move around so much, they can also be particularly vulnerable to misaligning. When a misalignment takes place at the top, similar to a chain of dominos, it can have far-reaching effects throughout the rest of the neck and even further down the back.
It's not terribly common that neck pain turns out to be something serious or life-threatening, but there are definitely some instances that warrant a visit to your medical doctor:
Most people are familiar with chiropractic care and are aware that chiropractors can help with neck pain relief. However, you may not be familiar with upper cervical chiropractic care, which is a niche within chiropractic that has a very particular goal and focus.
Upper cervical chiropractic care takes an extremely detailed look at how the atlas is positioned. This is extremely important for several reasons:
Knowing what you know now, neck pain can not only be uncomfortable, it can also be related to many other possible health conditions. By correcting the position of the atlas and by guiding it back to normal, it can not only reduce neck pain and discomfort, it can actually help your entire body to function better. When the atlas moves as it should, it reduces the strain on the entire neck, which can be the lasting solution to many bouts of recurring neck pain.
With upper cervical chiropractic care, the goal is stability and healing. You won't find that you'll need repeated adjustments over and over again in order to accomplish fleeting relief. Since we are so thorough in evaluating the exact nature of each individual's case, gentle adjustments are customized for each patient. The goal is to have them hold in place for as long as possible. This is why we are able to help so many people out of pain and into a better quality of life.
The content and materials provided in this web site are for informational and educational purposes only and are not intended to supplement or comprise a medical diagnosis or other professional opinion, or to be used in lieu of a consultation with a physician or competent health care professional for medical diagnosis and/or treatment. All content and materials including research papers, case studies and testimonials summarizing patients' responses to care are intended for educational purposes only and do not imply a guarantee of benefit. Individual results may vary, depending upon several factors including age of the patient, severity of the condition, severity of the spinal injury, and duration of time the condition has been present.