Neck Pain Relief from Your Chiropractor in Knoxville
Why The Cervical Neck Is So Important
Anatomically, the neck is made up of the base of the skull and the 7 vertebrae that lie beneath it. The brain stem sits just atop the hole in the skull called the foramen magnum and sends the spinal cord through this hole. The spinal cord sends nerves out between each vertebrae running down the entire spine. These nerves that come out of the spine go to, quite literally, every single structure of the body and are almost singlehandedly responsible for maintaining their function.
Due to its proximity to the brain, dysfunction to the upper cervical spine can have far-reaching effects throughout the entire body. This area is often responsible for chronic migraines, arm pain and tingling, temporomandibular or jaw issues, it can alter the parasympathetic nervous system responsible for “rest and digest” part of autonomic function. All to say, dysfunction in the cervical spine goes a lot farther than just neck pain alone.
Common Neck Pain Conditions & Symptoms
Much of the time the vertebrae of the upper cervical spine is intimately related to the onset of many different types of headaches. Dysfunction in the joints of the upper two vertebrae along with their articulation to the skull will cause the musculature of this area to tighten down in the back of the head and even affect various structures of the face and head. Muscles always react to joint dysfunction which will contribute to the constriction of the nerves in this area. This commonly manifests itself in the form of various types of headaches, even migraines. Few doctors are better at addressing this dysfunction than a Knoxville chiropractor.
The upper cervical area also can be very involved in TMJ (temporomandibular joint) dysfunction. The jaw and the C1 and C2 vertebrae share a lot of similar fibers and fascial connections. As stated above joint dysfunction will cause the musculature in the area to tighten down around the area, and in the upper cervical spine, this can directly affect the jaw. Jaw pain, clicking, or popping that goes along with pain in the neck or in the back of the head can be dead give away that that the neck is very involved in this issue. If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms you should seek immediate neck pain treatment in Knoxville.
Neck Pain & Pinching:
The joints that connect one vertebra to another up and down the spine are called the facet joints. These joints like any other joint in the body can become stuck and inflamed with abnormal movements. When these little joints become dysfunctional they can pinch and grab with neck movements, especially looking over your shoulder. The pain can be felt on the same side that you are turning towards or on the opposite side. Sometimes, pain may not be a thing that alerts you that this is happening. If when moving your head, you notice that there is a part of the range of motion that is lacking, more than likely one of these joints has become fixed and needs to be freed. If this is not corrected, the joint can continue to swell until nerves are being impinged and you may begin to experience numbness, tingling, or pain in the arms or hands. If you’re experiencing any nerve impingements it best to see a neck pain doctor sooner rather than later.
Arm Pain, Weakness, Numbness & Tingling:
Vertebral discs are thick, fibrous cushions between each vertebra that act as shock absorbers to the spine and also help to facilitate movement and the maintenance of the spinal curve. It makes up the front part of the hole that the nerves come out of in the spine. When too much pressure (usually in the form of compression) is placed on the disc, either in one traumatic incident, or a cumulation of much less intense incidents over a long period of time (being continuously hunched over a computer), the discs can start to protrude into these nerves. When this happens, there may also be pain, numbness, or tingling that goes into the shoulder and arm. Common pain paths are into the traps and down the back of the arm. Commonly, only a few fingers may be affected and not the whole hand. When this happens, it is important to seek neck pain treatment as quickly as possible so that muscle weakness and atrophy doesn’t occur.
Are You Seeking Neck Pain Relief in Knoxville
Dr. Bert diagnoses his patients using physical exams and other orthopedic and neurological tests. His treatment plan will usually include an adjustment, called cervical manipulation therapy, and may include neck exercises to do at home.
The seven small vertebrae in the cervical spine have a big job: supporting the full weight of your head, which on average weighs 9 to 12 pounds, also the size of an average bowling ball! The cervical spine is very flexible, allowing you to move your head in nearly every direction, but all that flexibility can also mean susceptibility to injury. Dr. Bert often has patients come in and say they didn’t “do anything” to their neck. You don’t have to! Daily repetitive movements, sitting, posture, normal aging, and everyday wear and tear can take a toll on the cervical spine.
During your visit, Dr. Bert will locate the source of your pain and will observe your posture and current neck range of motion, being sure to note any movement that causes pain. He will examine your spine’s alignment and curvature, check your shoulders and surrounding structures, test your reflexes, test your muscle strength, and denote pain patterns.
Visit The Best Neck Pain Doctor in Knoxville
As the best neck pain doctors in Knoxville, chiropractic care and physical therapy is always the first place to go for these types of conditions. Medications that other doctors would prescribe may treat your pain but won’t correct the cause of these symptoms. Few things are better at correcting these joint-related conditions than a chiropractic adjustment. It helps to reset the joint mechanics of the area and decrease nerve pressure. Physical therapy is vital for treating the soft tissue and developing strategies to correct muscle imbalances that will keep these conditions from developing again.
At Knoxville Spine and Sports, we combine the latest treatment therapies all under one roof to not just treat your complaint but make you a healthier, stronger, and more resilient human, capable of taking on whatever task you choose. Dr. Bert may also develop an extended care program that includes regular manipulation, rehabilitative therapy, and strengthening exercises. Call Knoxville Spine and Sports today at (865) 337-5574, and we will help you with your neck pain.