Patients suffering from acute or chronic neck pain are often in need of a neck pain specialist. With so many options it can be difficult for a patient to determine which specialist is the right one. Specialists in neck pain can range from medical doctors, specialists in orthopedics and spinal surgeons, physical therapists to non-medical practitioners such energy healers, acupuncturists, chiropractors and massage therapists.
If you are looking for a neck pain specialist it is important to do your research. Some people find they do not want an aggressive treatment for neck pain, such as surgery, but may want a more gentle neck pain treatment instead. Medical practitioners, such as a neck pain doctor, will often turn to medicine to treat neck pain and then send their patients home to recover. In this day and age of opioid use more medicine is not always the answer. Instead, many patients are turning to a chiropractor or a neck pain specialist for treatment to avoid having to rely on medication for relief from their pain.
Dr. Alex Kaminsky is a chiropractic neck pain specialist in New York and an expert in neck pain treatment. Meet with Dr. Kaminsky here at Craniosacral Therapy in NYC for chiropractic care and neck pain relief.
What is Neck Pain?
Neck pain, also known as cervical pain, can be any sort of discomfort a person is feeling in their neck. Neck pain can be anything from a stiff neck to a radiating pain that can present itself in another area of the body such as the shoulders or arms. Neck pain can also be a sharp shooting, pins and needles like or stabbing. Sometimes people just feel a general soreness in their neck that they cannot explain which is also characterized as neck pain.
How Common is Neck Pain?
People who suffer from neck pain are not alone. Over two-thirds of the population will suffer from neck pain during their lifetime (http://annals.org/aim/fullarticle/1033256/spinal-manipulation-medication-home-exercise-advice-acute-subacute-neck-pain?issueno=1&atab=10). Women also tend to have neck pain more often than men which is thought to be due to differences in hormones.
How Do I Treat Neck Pain?
People with back and neck pain are most likely to seek out an alternative therapy to treat their pain. In fact, a survey by the National Institute of Health indicated that over half of those with neck pain have turned to some alternative treatment for their pain and nearly a third of those with neck pain used chiropractors or a similar approach to try to alleviate their pain (https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nhsr/nhsr098.pdf).
A chiropractor may recommend several treatments such as manipulation of the neck, mobilization, manual therapy, neck exercises and massage. A chiropractor may also give patients some ideas for how to treat neck pain using self-care exercises at home.
If you feel any sort of discomfort in your neck for prolonged periods of time, are having trouble finding relief for neck pain or are seeking an alternative neck pain treatment, you should call Dr. Alex Kaminsky, a neck pain specialist in NYC, for a chiropractic consultation.
Why Am I Suffering from Neck Pain?
The neck is what connects the torso to the head. The head weighs around 10-11 pounds and the neck has to support that weight all day long. The neck is complex and consists of everything from skin, nerves of the neck and neck muscles to arteries, veins, glands and the esophagus. A pinched nerve in the neck, a worn neck joint, or a strained neck muscle can all lead to neck pain. Any type of damage or any issue in any of these areas can lead to neck pain.
Another issue that can cause neck pain is a misaligned spine from either poor posture or an injury to the neck. Wear and tear from daily use can also cause the spine to become misaligned. Patients looking to address these issues can contact a chiropractic specialist that can realign the spine and correct postural issues leading to neck pain. A chiropractic doctor will not only relieve neck pain but may also prevent neck pain from reoccurring in the future.
Why Is My Neck Stiff?
Everyday activities, as well as injuries, can lead to muscle stiffness in the neck. Poor posture, bad sleeping habits, excess stress held in the neck and shoulders, and sitting in front of the computer for long periods of time can all lead to neck stiffness. People who play sports are also prone to neck injuries and neck stiffness. Jerking the head around, falling down and bumping the head, whiplash and any other type of injury which causes the neck some trauma may lead to a stiff neck.
Daily wear and tear of the neck, known as cervical spondylosis, occurs as people age and eventually the joints of the neck start to wear down. This too can lead to neck pain and neck stiffness. Also, people who don’t exercise the muscles of the back regularly may also experience neck pain due to lack of strength needed to keep their posture aligned and their neck upright.
In some cases patients may be suffering from a cervical spine disorder. Conditions such as a herniated disc, facet joint disorder and cervical osteoarthritis are all types of cervical spine disorders associated with neck stiffness.
Very rarely a stiff neck may be due to a bacterial infection in the spinal fluid known as meningitis. Patients that have fever and nausea who are also experiencing neck stiffness should contact a doctor immediately to receive medical treatment.
If you are located in Midtown NYC and looking to determine the cause of your stiff neck and to receive neck pain treatment, contact Dr. Alex Kaminsky, a chiropractor in New York City, for expert neck pain care.
What Causes Neck Pain?
In order to understand what causes neck pain it is important to know there are two different types: acute neck pain and chronic neck pain.
Acute neck pain is neck pain that is usually very sharp and will happen very suddenly. It seldom lasts longer than six months. As long as there is no major underlying issue it might even go away on its own. Acute neck pain may be caused by such things as a muscle strain in the neck or a strain in the ligaments or tendons of the neck.
Chronic neck pain does not happen suddenly, instead it can last for weeks, months or even years. It usually occurs when some other issue is present. People with chronic pain usually have a hard time getting around, lack energy and may even have decreased appetite due to pain.
Neck pain can also be the result of Dowager’s hump. Patients with Dowager’s Hump have a visible hump and their heads are pushed forward. Dowager’s hump is a bump at the base of the neck that is usually caused by bad posture. Over time the base of the neck creates a hump composed of connective tissue and fat to compensate for the extra stress placed on this region.
Studies have shown that chiropractic care is effective in treating both acute and chronic neck pain (https://www.jmptonline.org/article/S0161-4754(13)00237-6/pdf).
Why Am I Waking Up With Neck Pain?
Neck pain experience upon waking up is often caused by poor sleeping positions. Chiropractic neck pain specialists will generally recommend that patients sleep on their sides or back. Patients will also want to have proper neck support. Back sleepers will need a pillow that provides extra neck support behind the neck. Feather pillows are a good option since they tend to shape nicely around the head. Memory foam as well as cervical pillows may provide extra support for the neck as well. Side sleepers will want a pillow that is slightly higher which promotes the position of a straight spine. Getting a full night’s rest every night is also good for managing neck pain as well as promoting overall health and wellness.
How Does a Chiropractic Specialist Treat Neck Pain?
Chiropractors treat patients with neck pain using gentle non-invasive treatments, known as adjustments, to reduce spinal subluxations, neck muscle spasms or restrictions in motion of the neck.
However, before such adjustments can begin a chiropractor collects medical information from the patient as well as details about a patient’s lifestyle. A chiropractor will then feel the neck to check for any problem areas. A chiropractor looks for any areas of excess neck stiffness, muscle spasms of the neck, and specific areas that might be causing excess neck pain.
A chiropractor will also ask the patient to move his or her neck in various ways to check for mobility as well as to see which movements reproduce this neck pain. He will also check for the curvature of the spine, posture and reflexes to assess the musculoskeletal and nerve function. If necessary the chiropractor will refer the patient for additional tests including x-ray or MRI to get an inside look at the underlying neck issues.
During the treatment phase the chiropractor usually starts with spinal manipulation. The goal of spinal manipulation is to align areas which may be misaligned or to correct areas where motion is restricted. Patients generally lie on their back or are in a seated position. The chiropractor may then manually move the vertebrae in the neck if needed, gently push / pull on the neck to stretch the spine, or a combination of both techniques in tandem or intermittently. The chiropractor may also use several other techniques such as rotating the head, moving the head sideways or bending the head in a specific direction as needed depending on the type of neck pain.
Manipulation is just one form of treatment for neck pain though. A chiropractor also employs several other techniques such as hot and cold therapy as well as stretching exercises for the neck. Heat applied to the neck will relax neck muscles and reduce neck tension. Cold is used primarily to reduce swelling the neck or inflammation. Stretching exercises help to loosen the neck and increase the overall flexibility of the neck.
A chiropractor may also massage the neck and shoulders and manually stretch the neck to reduce pain and decrease muscle spasms. Sometimes the chiropractor will place small electrodes on the neck to target specific areas that are leading to muscle spasms.
Patients should meet with a chiropractor in order to find out which neck treatment is right for them. If you are located in Midtown NYC and looking for a chiropractic neck specialist, Dr. Alex Kaminsky is available to meet with you and provide expert advice and neck pain treatment customized for especially for you.
What Are Some Good Habits for Relieving Neck Pain?
Neck pain is usually the result of habits acquired over the years. Poor neck habits often result in bad posture and cause excessive strain on the neck. They can also lead to neck stiffness and waking up with a sore neck every day. The good news is that you and a chiropractic neck pain specialist can correct these poor habits and work towards keeping your neck pain-free.
Maintaining good posture is key when creating habits to alleviate neck pain. Many people slouch when sitting down or performing daily tasks. Instead of slouching or hunching the back, try keeping objects at arms reach and position things like workstations and televisions at eye-level. Also, when reading, people should hold their books at eye-level and not drop their chins into their chests.
Other things for neck pain sufferers to avoid include holding their phones with their necks bent to the side, carrying heavy bags or purses on one side of the body, bending over to pick up something dropped (and not bending at the knees) and sleeping on a couch or bed that sags.
Some good habits include lowering overall stress levels and performing neck exercises. Eating a healthier diet can also have beneficial effect that may prevent neck pain from occurring as frequently.
A chiropractic specialist can provide advice on how to maintain good posture as well as ways to develop good habits to alleviate neck pain. A chiropractor will also provide neck exercises which can be used to strengthen and stretch the neck to reduce neck pain. Patients are often surprised at what a chiropractor might suggest and how well some of these neck pain treatments work.
If you are looking for a chiropractor in Midtown NYC, Dr. Alex Kaminsky is a chiropractor in New York who specializes in neck pain treatment.
Should I Worry About Neck Cracking?
A cracking neck is generally not something to be worried about. In fact, cracking sounds are often common during visits to the chiropractor during manipulation.
For those who experience neck cracking it is not usually a cause for concern.
However, if the neck is cracking after some sort of injury or if the neck cracks the exact same way every time it is moved, it may be time to see a neck pain specialist.
How Do I Find a Chiropractor Near Me in New York City?
If you’re looking for a neck pain treatment expert and chiropractic treatment in NYC, visit Dr. Alex Kaminsky, a neck pain specialist. Don’t wake up with neck pain or a stiff neck anymore, schedule an appointment with a chiropractor in midtown NYC and receive relief for your neck pain today.