How Do You Know If Neck Pain Is Serious?
Neck pain is common and we all experience it from time to time – whether we slept in an awkward position or we’re just tense staring at mobile or laptop screens. However, if your neck pain is persistently intense, it can be an indication that something serious is going on. Severe neck is not only devastating to deal with but also affects day to day activities and makes it difficult for you to drive and work. Read on to find out some common causes of neck pains and when you know it’s becoming a serious problem.
Signs That Neck Pain Is Serious
While most neck pains usually go away on their own, sometimes they may stay and cause chronic stiffness and nagging symptoms. When neck pain starts interfering with your routine activities or persists for several days, it can be a sign of a serious problem and demand an urgent visit to the doctor or chiropractor’s office.
These serious underlying causes could be an infection, spinal cord compression, disc herniation, meningitis, microtears in neck muscles, soft tissue injuries, cancer, or others. No matter what’s the cause, your neck pain always requires immediate medical attention in the following cases.
This pain usually affects the lower cervical vertebrae. Depending on the involvement of the number of vertebrae, you can feel it localized to one spot or radiating to shoulders. Consult your chiropractor if your neck pain is sharp or accompanied by stabbing and stinging.
Neck stiffness is a common symptom of meningitis – inflammation of the brain. It is a serious condition that requires immediate medical attention. Meningitis causes stiffness in the neck muscles, soreness, and difficulty moving the neck.
This is another serious neck problem that causes pain in the neck associated with reflex problems in the arm due to nerve root compression. It causes pain, numbness, and tingling in the arms and should be treated earlier to prevent complications.
Trouble with lifting objects or gripping
Lose grip or trouble lifting objects accompanied with neck pain can indicate a serious problem. It can be due to nerve compression in the neck, direct trauma, or cervical radiculopathy. Consult your doctor or chiropractor if you experience these symptoms along with neck pain.
Headaches / Migraines
Certain neck conditions and injuries cause irritation of the nerves connected to the brain. Compression of these nerves cause several types of headaches including tension headache, occipital neuralgia, and migraine.
If you experience any sort of nagging headache accompanied with neck pain, immediately consult a general physician or chiropractor for a proper diagnosis and prompt treatment.
Problems with balance or coordination
This is another red flag accompanied With the neck pain. If you are experiencing problem balancing or coordinating yourself, it can be due to nerve compression in the neck, cervical herniation, or a slipped disc.
The use of specific tools and chiropractic adjustments (both manual and electric) of the cervical spine can remove pressure from the spinal cord and help relieve pain and associated symptoms.