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Neck Pain

Your neck is made up of a series of stacked bones called vertebrae, which are held together by ligaments. Between each bone is a disc that helps distribute force through the spine, and a pair of spinal nerves that exit the spinal column. The joints of the neck are surrounded by numerous muscles.

Neck pain can result from a variety of factors, such as a car accident, fall, computer use, poor posture, arthritis, and many more. The most common causes of neck pain are whiplash and poor posture.

Whiplash is caused by a sudden extension and flexion of the neck. This rapid movement can cause strain to the neck muscles and in some cases sprain the ligaments. Most people think of whiplash as an injury sustained in a car accident, however whiplash can also occur with a strong blow to the head or falling and landing on the head.

Symptoms of whiplash may begin 24-48 hours after injury and typically include reduced movement, pain and stiffness. Most people with whiplash make a full recovery. Your physiotherapist will be able to assess the severity of your whiplash and provide the appropriate treatment. They are also able to determine if a more serious injury is present.

Having poor posture can lead to neck pain and may also be the cause of headaches. Sitting or standing with poor posture causes some muscles to work too hard and the joints to be unevenly loaded. Looking down for prolonged periods (when reading for example) or sitting with poor posture can cause cervicogenic headaches or neck headaches. Poor posture CAN be corrected over time! Your physiotherapist can treat the pain associated with poor posture and can provide you with specific stretches and exercises to correct your posture.