What is Straight Neck Syndrome? A Simple Guide


What is Straight Neck Syndrome?

Neck injury at the base of the skull can cause straight neck syndrome. The atlas and axis vertebrae surround and protect the brainstem. Injuries or trauma to the neck cause spinal misalignments and lead to an imbalance in posture due to irritation to the brainstem. 

Here are some factors that may cause misalignment:

  • Whiplash
  • Sports injuries
  • Car accidents
  • Slipping, sliding, and falling incidents
  • A blow to the head or neck

Straight neck syndrome or loss of neck curve is a widespread condition nowadays. A standard neck posture shows a reversed C-shaped curve of the neck, which allows for the proper balancing of the head over your shoulders. The straight neck syndrome is a postural distortion that can lead to a surge of musculoskeletal issues throughout the body.

Symptoms of Straight Neck Syndrome

Straight neck syndrome occurs partly due to the anatomical weakness of the neck and head. The human head weighs about 10-12 pounds. It rests atop the C1 or atlas vertebra, which weighs merely 2 ounces. As a result, this head and neck junction becomes predisposed to injury or trauma. In other words, the atlas and axis vertebrae are susceptible to injuries or misalignment. 

It can affect the muscles that flank both sides of your neck and into the shoulders. As a result, you may experience "pulling" forward of your neck. Thus, a forward head posture happens, which then further leads to various straight neck symptoms such as:

  • Abnormal posture
  • Headaches
  • Neck pain
  • Lower neck pain
  • Mid-back pain
  • Cognitive problems
  • Upper shoulder pain
  • Emotional imbalance

The brainstem, located within the atlas (C1) and axis (C2), manages numerous of the body's functions. A straight neck can irritate, and therefore can decrease brainstem function.  As a result, a "tethering" of the spinal cord develops, leading to a straight neck syndrome.

What Causes Straight Neck Syndrome?

Straight neck syndrome occurs when a prior neck injury combines with these activities or factors:

  • The overuse of computers and mobile devices
  • Craning your neck downward to use your phone or gadgets for more than a few hours
  • Placing your phone between your neck and shoulder 
  • Sitting for prolonged periods without stretching or resting.
  • Slouching while watching TV

Dealing with Straight Neck Syndrome – Steps You Can Take

Here are some steps you can initiate to prevent or reduce straight neck syndrome:

  • Make an ergonomically sound workspace.
  • Keep your computer screen set at eye level to prevent your neck from craning too low or too high.
  • Keep your monitor or screen directly in front of you, not on the left or right side, where you have to keep your neck craning at an awkward angle. 
  • Be mindful of keeping a proper posture while sitting or standing. 
  • If you slouch a lot, get a lumbar support pillow and use it, so you are forced to always sit up in an upright and proper position.

Try This Towel Roll Exercise

This exercise can help with your straight neck syndrome. We recommend that you do this simple and easy exercise at least seven minutes a day. 

Let’s begin: Roll up a bath towel into a cylinder.  Place your rolled-up towel directly underneath your neck while lying on your back on the floor (not on a bed). Make sure that the cloth is big enough so your head, while at rest, is barely off the ground. If it is touching the floor, roll up the towel more to make it bigger. 

It is a simple yet effective move because it can encourage a neck curve, also known as a normal cervical lordosis. This position on the ground with a towel beneath your neck can also help remove tension in your neck muscles.

Upper Cervical Chiropractic and Straight Neck Syndrome

Get to the root cause of this health issue – straight neck syndrome – through upper cervical chiropractic care. An upper cervical chiropractic procedure helps restore normal nervous system function by accurately correcting misalignments in the upper cervical spine.

Life has a way of causing injuries or trauma to the neck or head. What regular things might these be? Sporting mishaps, vehicular fender benders, skateboard or snowboard accidents, and even normal wear and tear can cause misalignments in the upper neck area. These factors are responsible for causing injury in the joints and soft tissues of the neck.

If an injury happens in the neck or head region, the atlas and axis vertebrae in the neck may misalign at the joint level. As a result, this structural misalignment irritates the brainstem. Then, it would create a wide variety of health problems throughout the body.

Correcting upper cervical misalignments can produce profound beneficial effects on the person’s posture and proper functions of the body. If you suffer from straight neck syndrome or other serious health issues, seek an upper cervical chiropractor near you.

Why Upper Cervical Chiropractic Care Matters

An upper cervical doctor’s expertise focuses on the upper cervical spinal correction. The patient barely feels this gentle and precise procedure because it requires no forceful twisting, pulling, cracking, or jerking motion of the neck or spine. It ensures, there will be no risks of neck pain.

Also, it aims to re-activate the proper brain communication to the areas affected by misalignment and restore the body’s balance. Ultimately, as soon as the precise correction finishes, blood and oxygen circulation increase, muscles relax, the immune system gains vitality and newfound strength, and the body’s natural, self-healing starts. 

Search for an upper cervical chiropractor in your area and say goodbye to any neck problems you have such as straight neck syndrome.

Find An Upper Cervical Doctor in Your Areato schedule a consultation today.

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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.