Neck pain can make daily life almost unbearable, but you can fight back against certain types of neck pain with active treatment options. One of the most common types of active pain management options is physical therapy, and it’s typically recommended because it helps to strengthen the affected area as opposed to simply letting stressed or injured areas heal. It’s this strength training process that will help prevent neck pain from coming back in the future.
But aside from daily neck pain, what are some of the signs that you may benefit from physical therapy for a cervical spine issue? We share three signs that suggest PT may be just what you need in today’s blog.
Who Can Benefit From Cervical Spine Physical Therapy?
If one of the following three scenarios describes your situation, you may want to consult with a spine specialist or a physical therapist to learn more about physical therapy for your neck pain.
1. You Have Chronic Headaches Or Migraines
You have a number of spinal nerves in your neck, and they are connected to the information center that sends messages about sensations within your facial muscles to your brain. If these nerves become compressed or pinched, your brain can interpret this sensation as a headache. Your headaches can also be caused by muscle tension or disc misalignment in the area. Physical therapy can help with all of these potential causes of headaches. It can help to free compressed nerves and reduce muscle tension or disc issues that could be causing your headaches. Through gentle stretching and muscle strengthening, we can teach you how to prevent headache onset and how to reduce their severity when one develops in the future.
2. Limited Range Of Motion In The Neck
Even if you don’t suffer from daily neck pain, you could benefit from cervical physical therapy if you have limited or inhibited range of motion in your neck. If there is tightness when turning your head in one direction, or if pain develops when you try to turn your head to your left, all you may need is a few physical therapy sessions to relax these tight muscles or free the compressed structures. Physical therapists can use gentle stretching techniques to expand your range of motion and reduce discomfort when extending your neck to a normal range of motion. If you feel pain or discomfort when checking your blindspot in the car, you should consider physical therapy for your neck.
3. Neck Numbness
Neck numbness may not seem like that big of a deal. After all, it’s not pain, and it’s not as bothersome as it would be if the numbness developed in an area like your hands or feet. That being said, numbness is a clear sign that something is wrong in the region. For many patients, the root cause of their localized numbness is from a bulging or herniated disc that is compressing key spinal nerves. The preferred method of treatment for cervical bulging or herniated discs? You guessed it, physical therapy. PT often yields great results and can help prevent the need for a costly surgery. Physical therapists can also explain how your posture contributes to these shifting discs and provide you with some lifestyle adjustments to take some pressure off these sensitive discs.
If you think you’d benefit from physical therapy of the neck, or you just want to learn a little more about what’s going on in your neck, reach out to the physical therapists at OrthoRehab PT today.