Many people suffer from neck pain and/or headaches at some point in their lives. For those that experience neck pain more frequently however, it can interfere with their participation and enjoyment of activities of daily living.
Neck pain does not have to derive from a trauma, such as a fall or motor vehicle accident, but can also occur due to prolonged adverse loading secondary to sustained poor postures and muscle imbalances.
There are many muscles that attach from our trunk, ribs and shoulder blades to our neck. If these muscles are continually overworking, they can develop painful trigger points, reduce in length, restrict joint motion and increase compressive loading at neck joints. This can contribute towards the aching and tightness experienced in people’s necks. A small percentage of headaches derive solely from the upper neck segments and can occur in combination with tension-type headaches and migraines.
Manual therapy such as joint mobilisations and massage can help improve people’s symptoms, however contributing factors such as poor postures, general activity levels, muscle imbalances and muscle strength and length issues, need to be addressed for improved longer term outcomes.
Following a competent assessment, your physio can help get you back to doing the things you love.
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