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Neck Pain

One of the main functions of your neck is to structurally support your head. The average adults’ head weighs 12lbs, think of a bowling ball. If there is dysfunction in the neck area, this can lead to an array of health issues. 30% of neck pain cases develop into chronic symptoms, which is why we want to address the neck pain as early as possible. Some causes of neck pain are poor posture, excessive electronic device use, poor sleeping positions, acute injuries and poor biomechanics. Poor posture and poor biomechanics are microtraumas that worsens little by little over time.

The build up of microtrauma leads to degeneration. Degeneration causes a lack of motion in the spine and this is where chiropractic care has a big impact. Chiropractic adjustments help to gain motion in the neck joints and to have the proper spinal alignment to avoid degeneration. With every chiropractic adjustment, subluxations are found and eliminated to allow for proper nerve function.

How we treat neck pain

When you come into our office for the first time, expect it to take up to an hour for a comprehensive exam and consultation. The first part of the exam is the detailed case history with a doctor that will attentively listen. Then posture checks along with neurological scans will be performed. Orthopedic tests are different positions the doctor will take you through in the neck area to help determine the cause of pain. Then x-rays will be taken of your neck area to assess the cervical curve, alignment, and bone and disc health. The curve in your neck, cervical curve, is of high importance because when there is not a proper curve, this causes stress and tension on your spinal nerves and spinal cord. When a nerve has stress on it, it loses its function.

When there is a misalignment in the spine this causes interference or stress on the nervous system, this is called a subluxation. Our nervous system is composes of the brain, spinal cord and the spinal nerves. The nervous system controls and coordinates every cell, organ and tissue in our body. When a subluxation is present, the nerve is not signaling to the brain at its full capacity. As a chiropractor, we find these subluxations in your spine and take the pressure of the nerve so that there is a full line of communication between the body and the brain. Subluxations are corrected through chiropractic adjustments that allow your spine to have the proper motion and alignment. If your headaches are being caused by a subluxation, then they won’t get better until that is addressed.

Massage therapy for neck pain

The neck muscles tend to be tight and weak in most of the adult population, especially in women because this is where stress tends to settle in the female body. Women are 1.5 more times likely to complain of neck pain. Massage therapy helps to loosen up tight muscles and to help lymph drainage to help remove toxins from the body. Massage therapy and chiropractic care compliment each other. Massage therapy can address the direct cause of neck pain if the cause is a pulled or strained muscle or a result of a nerve irritation.

Exercises for neck pain

Exercises help to strengthen muscles and to stabilize neck structures along with chiropractic adjustments. Theses exercises are great to do even if you are not experiencing neck pain, we call it “flossing” your spine. You do these exercises twice a day, once first thing in the morning and then right before you go to bed. We show you how to do these exercises in our office and then give you a plan for you to do at home.

Causes of Neck Pain

Tech neck

Tech neck or “text” neck is a condition that has been on the rise in the past decade. This condition is due to the increase in use of technology, especially cellular devices, always having the head in a downward position. Adults spend an average of 4 hours daily on a device. This is a health concern because the head starts to move in a forward position on the neck due to poor posture and biomechanics. Research shows that for every inch forward of the placement of the head, it adds 10lbs of pressure on the neck muscles and ligaments. There is hope! With chiropractic adjustments, exercises and stretches, proper alignment of the spine can help to reverse the process.

Degenerative disc disease

Typically this is seen in older aged adults as the process of aging starts to break down the discs. This is mainly due to a lack of motion and poor biomechanics. Some other causes are obesity, smoking and physical labor or trauma to the spine. The disc is how the nerves get their nutrients through motion. If there is a smaller disc due to degeneration, this shrinks the space that the nerve has to come out between the bones in the neck. Chiropractic adjustments can reverse this process over time by making sure there is proper alignment in the cervical spine(neck) and that motion is present in all the joints.

Spinal stenosis

Spinal stenosis is a serious issue that can cause multiple symptoms. Spinal stenosis can cause pain, weakness, numbness, or changes in bowel/bladder habits. This occurs when there is a thinning or narrowing of the spinal cord cavity that runs on the back side of your spine. This causes stress on the spinal cord and on the spinal nerves that are exiting through the spine. Standing or walking can cause excruciating pain while sitting down or bending forward helps relieve the pain.


Osteoarthritis is a condition of degeneration due to a lack of motion and long term poor biomechanics. Bone is being laid down, called bone spurs, to prevent progression of the condition in the spine. These bone spurs then cause pressure on the spinal nerves which then creates neck pain. Typically seen in the aging process but tend to see it in earlier ages now due to poor biomechanics. Chiropractic adjustments help to put motion in the joints in the neck and proper alignment and biomechanics to reverse or stop the progression of osteoarthritis.


Whiplash is an injury to the structures of the neck causing pain due to a trauma such as a car accident. During a whiplash, the neck curve straightens, with your head moving forward and then back. If this is not addressed it can lead to chronic issues. Typically patients that experience a whiplash wont have pain initially but then the pain comes hours to a couple days after the trauma. Chiropractic adjustments along with massage therapy, once inflammation is decreased, is important to make sure that you don’t develop chronic issues.


When should you see a chiropractor for neck pain?

You should see a chiropractor right away to address your neck pain. The longer you wait, the more the condition tends to worsen and then the longer the healing time.

Is it ok to pop my own neck?

You should try to avoid “popping” or “cracking” your own neck. When you do this on your own you are moving joints that can already move, therefore making them hypermobile and not moving the joints that need the correcting. Chiropractors are trained to put the proper force and motion into a joint.

How should I sleep with neck pain?

You should sleep on a pillow on your side or on your back. Make sure your pillow is level with your shoulders so that your neck is straight, not putting extra stress on the muscles and nerves.

How do I relieve my neck pain?

Chiropractic adjustments, massage therapy, specific stretches and exercise and reducing inflammatory foods in your diet.

Are chiropractors covered by insurance for neck pain?

Yes, we accept most insurance plans. When you come in for your first visit, we check on your insurance coverage for you.


Neck Pain | (586) 978-9900