Disc disease of the cervical spine, in which abnormalities in one or more intervertebral discs cause neck discomfort, can sometimes be treated with straightforward at-home interventions. Seeing a physical therapist, who can treat abnormalities, teach you how to extend and strengthen your neck and vertebrae, improve your posture, and prevent neck discomfort from recurring, is frequently beneficial. It would help if you also contemplated visiting a chiropractor. In most patients, the exercises and manipulations these medical professionals use can alleviate pain and restore mobility.
Before beginning treatment, a physical therapist or chiropractor will conduct a thorough evaluation. They will evaluate the range of motion in your neck. You may be asked about symptoms such as neck or shoulder blade discomfort, pain radiating down the arm to the hand or digits, and numbness or tingling in the arm or shoulder. Your strength, reflexes, and other possible pain sources will be evaluated. In addition, the therapist or chiropractor will evaluate the joint function in your neck and back to identify any limitations or dysfunctions that may be contributing to your discomfort.
Stretch, Strengthen, and Straighten Your Neck
Your physical therapist or chiropractor can use a variety of manipulations and exercises to strengthen the area, alleviate neck stiffness and restore normal function. Before exercise, treatments such as cold or heat, electrical stimulation, deep tissue massage and ultrasound may be utilised.
You will practise a variety of exercises to strengthen and stretch the muscles that support your neck during neck pain physiotherapy. You will also learn how to enhance your posture and mobility. The physical therapist may have you exercise in front of a mirror so that you can see your errors and correct them in order to acquire appropriate posture.
Chiropractors and physical therapists employ similar techniques. Adjustments may assist in restoring normal neck function and alleviating discomfort. Similar to physical therapy, chiropractors manipulate the neck and thoracic joints to decrease rigidity, enhance mobility, and expand the range of motion. Individuals with neck vascular conditions, such as carotid artery stenosis or advanced osteoarthritis, may find these adjustments unsuitable and potentially dangerous.
Before treating you, your physical therapist, chiropractor, or medical doctor should determine if you are at risk for further injury from manipulations.
Traction of the Neck for Cervical Disc Disease
Cervical traction is a technique that physical therapists and chiropractors use to alleviate discomfort and enhance mobility. Traction gradually extends the neck, widening intervertebral spaces and temporarily relieving pressure on the affected discs. Continuous or intermittent neck traction, alternating between brief periods of tugging and resting, is possible.
You can also perform cervical traction at home. There are pulley systems that can be attached to a doorway and devices that facilitate lying-down cervical traction. Suppose you intend to perform cervical traction independently. In that case, you should consult a physical therapist or chiropractor to ensure you purchase the correct apparatus and learn how to set it up properly.
Cervical Disc Disease, Cervical Pillows and Collars
The purpose of cervical cushions (neck pillows) is to immobilise the neck while sleeping partially. However, no scientific evidence supports the efficacy of cervical cushions. It is advisable to seek advice from your physical therapist or chiropractor.
Soft cervical collars do not serve to stabilise the neck as much as they serve as a reminder to practise proper posture and range of motion techniques. Rigid cervical collars do immobilise the neck, but long-term use is uncomfortable.