In our previous blog posts, we have discussed the root causes of neck pain and how we can address them in the workplace. If you are suffering with neck pain, you know how frustrating it can be to simply not be able to function day to day without any pain. In our previous post, we discussed several ways you can address neck pain when not under care from a health care professional. These methods involved a sound ergonomic set up at work, stretching routines and how to address our postural imbalances with postural breaks and exercises. If you have made these modifications and the pain persists then it is simply time to get help from a professional.
At Advanced Health Chiropractic we pride ourselves on being able to figure out the root cause of the neck pain. This involves a detailed health history, orthopedic and neurological exam and most importantly a set of digital x-rays, including a biomechanical assessment of the neck called a ‘motion study’. From this evaluation, we can pinpoint the joint, tissue or nerve that is causing your pain and create a plan to get the pain corrected, objectively.
Many people that we see and treat in the clinic suffering with neck pain have either been involved in some form of trauma, like a car accident or are in an environment that is full of repetitive stress, such as sitting. Each type of trauma has a similar effect on both the spine and the soft tissue. Essentially the spine shifts out of alignment, either by the head shifting forwards, the neck loses its normal curvature or a combination of the two. This is an issue that needs to be addressed as this is often the root cause of neck pain. The cervical curve is designed to carry the weight of our head, which on average can be anywhere from 10-12lbs. When the head starts to shift forwards, it creates a massive amount of stress and tension on the joints in our neck, which over time can degenerate, causing neck pain. It also lengthens the soft tissue in our neck and shoulders placing them under a state of stress, which over time breaks down becoming weak and inflexible.
Through a specific technique, called chiropractic biophysics, we can objectively change the shape of the spine and shift back towards normal alignment. Thus, releasing stress and tension on the joints, tissue, and nerves in our neck. This offers both short term relief and long-term results. We are one of only two clinics within the city of Chicago that are qualified to do this. Chiropractic BioPhysics is also the number one researched and proven form of chiropractic.
Spinal alignment is key to correcting neck pain, however, a common area that is missed when treating neck pain is the soft tissue within the neck. Once the tissue becomes damaged from stresses like we just mentioned it is forever damaged unless specifically treated. This is one of the leading reasons, as well as poor alignment within the neck that the pain keeps on coming back.
Here at Advanced Health Chiropractic, we are specifically trained to evaluate and treat the soft tissue in the neck, offering a unique form of treatment specifically designed at restoring health to the tissue in the neck. Through our soft tissue protocols, we can restore range of motion to the neck and health to the tissue, allowing it to function properly, meaning less neck pain both in the short and the long term.
Lastly, overall posture is critical to essentially been pain-free. Posture is the window to our health, and chances are if we are in poor posture, we will have some form of pain. Traumas such as car accidents or repetitive stresses create postural imbalances within our body, essentially the big muscles that move us to take over the smaller muscles that stabilize us, we call this upper cross syndrome. When this happens, it creates an imbalance and a weakness, which over time can lead to symptoms such as neck pain.
Through specific bio mechanical analysis, we can see which structures are working to hard and which structures are weak and address that imbalance through physical therapy. We first aim to improve mobility in the neck and shoulders, then activation and stabilization of the weak muscles begins. Once we are stable, we can then strengthen those muscle groups allowing us to stay in good posture and our of pain.
Too often in health care, there is a ‘butting’ of heads between specific disciplines or even within the same discipline with one discipline thinking that they are superior to the other, or completely writing the other off altogether as a viable way to address one’s health. When combining many forms of treatment, that are technically within different disciplines of health care, yet seeing and utilizing their benefits and blending them together you can create an environment that puts the patients’ needs first and allow them to receive the care they should have access too, and get results they should see, which is been able to live a pain-free lifestyle, both in the short and long term. This is exactly how we think and act at Advanced Health Chiropractic. There is no right or wrong way to treat, each person is treated as an individual and their health issue is the same way. If you are tired of seeing multiple providers, or have seen results but only for a short time before the pain returns and are ready to get out of pain, objectively, and live without restriction we encourage to give us a call so we can begin helping you achieve all of your health and wellness goals.
We look forward to seeing you at the office.
Dr. Luke Stringer.