Most adults will experience neck pain at some point in their lives. However, there are a number of different reasons why you may be feeling neck pain.
Today, we’re highlighting some of the most common reasons behind your neck pain.
Your Workstation is Setup Poorly
Bad posture can sneak into any activity. One of the most common places people experience bad posture, however, is at a workstation. Whether you’re working, typing, studying, or reading, it’s easy to practice poor neck posture at a workstation. Many people extend their necks over a laptop for long hours a day, for example. This can lead to significant neck and back pain problems over time. Take time to organize your workstation for optimal alignment. Make sure the top of your monitor is level with your eyes when staring straight forward, for example.
Too Much Phone Cradling
Do you spend a lot of time on the phone cradling it between your ear and your shoulder? This can put strain on your neck. Consider getting a headset or similar hands-free device.
Certain jobs require you to make the same motion repeatedly. Sometimes, a hard physical labor job can cause neck pain issues. In other cases, frequent neck movement at a desk job – like turning around to talk to a co-worker at a separate cubicle – can cause neck pain. Most neck and back pain isn’t caused by a specific major event: it’s caused by small, repetitive motions over a long period of time that cause wear and tear.
Jaw problems can lead to neck pain. Your temporomandibular joint (TMJ) on the side of your face sits close to the uppermost vertebra on your neck (the atlas). Many of those who experience TMJ disorders also experience neck pain. Similarly, those who have frequent neck pain issues may develop TMJ disorders.
Some neck pain isn’t linked to repetitive motions or injuries. Instead, it’s linked to arthritis. Osteoarthritis is a condition where the protective cartilage between the joints of your vertebrae wear down. It can cause neck pain when you make certain movements: your bones are rubbing against each other with minimal cartilage in between to reduce grating.
An old or new sports injury can easily cause neck pain. Slipping, falling, and crashing can easily cause injuries to the neck. Some people are surprise to have symptoms of whiplash after falling playing a sport, for example. However, just like a car accident, certain sports injuries and collisions can generate a tremendous amount of force on the neck, causing whiplash.
Misaligned vertebrae can irritate the nerve roots of your spinal cord, causing a pinched nerve. This can cause neck pain at the source along with numbness, tingling, and weakness through your extremities.
Whiplash or Car Accidents
Whiplash is one of the most common causes of neck pain. Many whiplash accidents – but certainly not all – occur from car accidents. Car accidents and similar collisions can put excessive strain on the tissues and joints in your neck. Sometimes, these effects are felt immediately. In other cases, they take several days to show up.
Sleeping on your Stomach
Stomach sleepers are at a greater risk of developing neck pain. If you sleep on your stomach and experience neck pain, then you may want to adjust your posture. When you sleep on your stomach, your neck is turned maximally to one side or the other. When repeated over a long period of time, it causes stress to the area and could lead to neck pain.
Carrying a Heavy Bag Over One Shoulder
If you regularly carry a heavy bag over one shoulder, then it could lead to neck pain. Your neck and spine adjust themselves to carry the heavy weight on one side of your body. They compensate for the weight on one side by adjusting to the other side, for example. Lighten the load or distribute the weight evenly across your back if you’re experiencing neck pain.
Certain diseases or illnesses can lead to neck pain. Rheumatoid arthritis, meningitis, or cancer for example, are all linked to neck pain.
Grinding Your Teeth
Up above, we mentioned that TMJ disorders and neck pain are closely linked. This is the same reason why some people who grind their teeth at night experience neck pain.
Stress and Anxiety
If you have been dealing with a lot of stress lately, then it could cause neck pain. Stress and anxiety cause your muscles to tighten. When people tell you that you’re holding tension in your neck and back – it’s true!
Discover the Cause of Your Neck Pain with a Chiropractic Consultation
Schedule a consultation with Denver’s leading chiropractor today. Renew Chiropractic is accepting new patients.
Since 1997, Dr. Jason Jumper and the Renew Chiropractic team have been solving neck pain problems for patients across Lakewood and Denver, Colorado.