Neck pain is a common condition in the United States. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states approximately 20% of adults reported having neck pain within the past three months. Additionally, an estimated 10% of the population experiences chronic neck pain, which can be defined as pain lasting more than three months. However, it is essential to note that these statistics are from 2018 and may have changed in recent years.
There are several common causes of cervical or neck pain, including
Muscle strain or sprain: This is one of the most common causes of neck pain. It can happen due to poor posture, sudden jerking movement, lifting heavy objects incorrectly, or sleeping awkwardly.
Poor posture: Sitting for long periods, hunching over a computer or phone, and slouching can cause stress and strain on the neck muscles.
Pinched nerve: A pinched nerve in the cervical region can cause numbness, pain, and tingling in the arms and hands.
Osteoarthritis: is a degenerative joint disease that affects the neck joints, causing pain and stiffness.
Herniated disc: Herniated discs in the cervical spine can affect the nerves, resulting in pain, numbness, and weakness in the arms and hands.
Cervical spondylosis: is a degenerative condition of the neck that can cause pain and stiffness in the neck and shoulders.
Trauma: A fall or car accident can cause a whiplash injury to the neck.
Pain relievers: Over-the-counter pain medications like acetaminophen or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can help to relieve pain and reduce inflammation.
Physical therapy: This approach may involve specific exercises, stretches, and manual therapy techniques to improve mobility, strength, and posture.
Heat or cold treatment: Applying cold or heat can help to reduce pain and inflammation.
Corticosteroid injections: These anti-inflammatory medications are injected into the affected area to reduce pain and inflammation.
Surgery: In some cases, surgery may be indicated for severe underlying conditions such as herniated discs or spinal stenosis.
In addition, lifestyle changes such as practicing good posture and regular exercise can also help to prevent and manage neck pain.
Numerous studies have shown that acupuncture can be an effective treatment for neck pain, often as effective as traditional Western medical treatments such as physical therapy or pain medication. Acupuncture can be an effective modality for cervical pain and neck pain when performed by a qualified practitioner, with few side effects.
Acupuncture has been used for over 3,000 years in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) to treat many conditions, including neck pain. Acupuncture treatment for neck pain may involve inserting needles into points along the neck, back, arms, and acupuncture points on the head and feet. The needles are left in place for some time, typically 20-30 minutes, while the patient relaxes. Acupuncture Zen in Delray Beach has been treating neck pain for over 17 years.