Common Neck Problems
Soft tissue injury, headaches, neck pain, tight muscles, and stiffness can be caused by a soft tissue injury. These injuries can include strains (stretched or torn muscles) and sprains (stretched or torn ligaments.) Repeated poor posture can also damage tissues and lead to symptoms.
If you have experienced whiplash, you may have neck pain, tight muscles, and headaches. Whiplash results when an impact forces your head and neck too far forward and too far backward. The head can also be thrown from side to side. The unnatural movement damages parts of the neck, such as muscles, ligaments, tendons, and joints. The most common cause of whiplash is a car accident. But it can also happen during a fall or sports injury.
Degenerative Joint Disease
Pain, headaches, and stiffness in the neck that’s often worse in the morning are common symptoms of degenerative joint disease. The problem occurs when the smooth cartilage that lines healthy joints wears down (degenerates) as we age. This is often called arthritis. Overuse of a joint or a past injury can also lead to the disease. Pain results when growths of bone (bone spurs) caused by rubbing vertebrae press on nerves.
Nerve Root Problems
Numbness, tingling, or weakness in your shoulders, arms, or hands may be the result of a nerve root problem. You may also have shooting pain that runs down the arms (often when turning the head). These symptoms occur when nerves become stretched and inflamed. This may result from problems with joints, discs, or misaligned vertebrae.
The Road to Recovery
Relief Care Most patients consult our office because they have an ache or a pain. Their goal? Relief. That’s our first objective. A thorough examination reveals areas of spinal dysfunction. Then, we offer a care plan designed to give you the best results in the shortest amount of time. Visits are frequent during this period of intensive care. Each visit builds on the ones before, so keep your appointments to get the best results. Decision Time When you’re feeling better you’ll have a decision to make. Will you continue with the care necessary to fully heal soft tissues? Or, abandon the investment that you’ve made so far? When you continue your care, visits are less frequent, and progress will be less dramatic. If you end your care before fully healing muscles and soft tissues, you can invite a relapse. Whatever your choice, we’re here to serve and help support you in your decision.
Wellness Care Your health affects everything you do and everyone you know. With so many people depending on you, it makes sense to invest in your health. A program of chiropractic checkups can help you be the loving parent, the responsive spouse, the understanding friend, or the dependable employee. Invest in your health. You’re worth it!
A Misaligned vertebrae that is fixated and affecting a nerve is known as a subluxation. One of the goals of chiropractic is to correct the alignment of subluxated vertebrae. In doing so, the spine will be healthier and stronger over time. Left untreated, subluxations will cause pre-mature aging of the spine. Calcium deposits will accumulate and the cartilage will deteriorate. Scar tissue will fill the joint and over time you will lose mobility and flexibility. This is why correction of spinal alignment and restoration of spinal motion is so important. Dr. Bennett has a variety of techniques for correcting these subluxations and he will find the treatment that suites your needs.
Below is a series of x-rays that demonstrate the degenerative changes that can take place over time if subluxations are left untreated.
- NORMAL The vertebrae are spaced equally apart. The bones are smooth on their edges. The disc spaces are dark and free of calcium deposits.
- PHASE ONE The normal curve has decreased. Motion is no doubt affected, however the patient may still present with no symptoms.
- PHASE TWO Calcium deposits are accumulating. Surfaces of the vertebral edges are irregular and rough. Disc degeneration is taking place and movement of the joints is no longer smooth.
- PHASE THREE Significant degeneration has taken place and the joints are partially or completely fused. Chronic nerve pressure or inflammation may result in permanent nerve damage. At this point the damage is irreversible. Other health conditions are associated with this level of degeneration.
A subluxated vertebrae is demonstrated in the picture to the left. In this image the second vertebrae shown has shifted backwards and is now causing pressure on the nerve. Over time this condition, left uncorrected, will result in nerve damage and spinal degeneration.
The Vertebral Subluxation Complex as it is referred to is broken into 5 categories.
- Abnormal motion- The vertebral movement becomes irregular. The motion becomes too much (hypermobile) or too little (hypomobile).
- Abnormal function of nerves- Nerves can become hyperactive or overexcited or they can be “choked off” in which case they are not delivering the information from the brain that the body needs to function. Either way, your health will be affected in a negative way unless this condition is corrected.
- Abnormal Muscle Function – The muscles become tight or go into spasms. This is your body’s way of protecting itself from further injury. Unfortunately the result of this muscle tension is discomfort and sometimes considerable pain. Correcting the spinal alignment will permit the muscles to once again relax and return to their normal state of tone.
- Abnormal soft tissue function – The misalignment will strain the supporting structures of the spine. This will result in swelling of the tissues involved. Ligaments and tendons will respond to the abnormal forces by becoming swollen and irritated.
- Abnormal Physiology – In an effort to stabilize the injured joint, your body will continue a long process of degenerative changes that will permanently affect the ability of the joint to function. Calcium deposits and scar tissue are the primary elements of this process and they will be deposited to the point of rendering the joint unusable. Because of the way your spine and nervous system are so closely tied in with your health, any condition that interferes with this harmony will affect your health in some manner.
Subluxations have been linked to a wide array of health conditions essential to a healthy body. Function of your immune system, your heart and circulatory system and of course your musculoskeletal system are only a few of the areas affected by poor nerve function. Dr Bennett is highly trained in correction of these serious health risks. In a relatively short time, he can have you on the road to recovery. You will feel more energetic and your movement will be smoother and more effective. Athletes use chiropractic to keep their bodies functioning at maximum efficiency and so can you. By restoring healthy motion back to your spine and pelvis, the doctor can help to minimize the wear and tear that will age your spine over time.