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Understanding Cervicalgia

31 July 2023

Neck pain is a common problem that affects people of all ages. In fact, it is assumed that one out of every three individuals suffers from it. The pain can be caused by a number of things, including poor posture, stress, and injuries. While neck pain can be frustrating and uncomfortable, there are ways to relieve the pain and improve your quality of life.

Although most people believe that any pain in the neck is neck pain, medical professionals beg to differ. They understand that not all neck pain is not created equal and may require slightly different treatments.

Cervicalgia at a Glance

The cervical spine, more commonly known as the neck, is responsible for supporting the head, keeping the spinal cord protected, and allowing a great range of movement. It comprises of several components, including bones, muscles, tendons, ligaments, and nerves. These components are perfectly structured to protect the spinal cord while the neck remains flexible.

However, flexibility comes at a price sometimes. It makes the neck vulnerable to structural damage, especially when a particular region is under constant strain. Some movements put sharp pressure on the neck, leading to an episode of acute neck pain,

Cervicalgia is a type of neck pain originating from the neck, specifically from the cervical region (the uppermost portion of the spine). Although it can be caused by trauma or injury, it can also be due to other factors, such as stress and poor posture. It is estimated that 60-70% of people with neck pain suffer from cervicalgia.

Cervicalgia is unique from other neck pains because it doesn't spread to other areas of the body, such as the back or arms. It's mostly contained in and near the neck.



Causes of Cervicalgia

There are many causes of cervicalgia. However, poor posture is one of the most common causes of cervicalgia. Poor posture puts unnecessary strain on the muscles and joints in your neck, leading to pain and discomfort. If you are sitting at a desk all day, make sure to adjust your chair to sit up straight with your shoulders back. Taking breaks every hour to move around and stretch would be best.

Injuries such as whiplash can also cause cervicalgia. Whiplash occurs when the head is suddenly thrown forward and backward, often due to a car accident. The sudden movement puts a lot of strain on the muscles and ligaments in the neck, leading to pain and stiffness.

Long-term stress can also be a cause of cervicalgia. When you are constantly stressed, it can lead to tension headaches and neck pain. Your shoulders and neck can be strained without you even realizing it. To relieve stress, try yoga or meditation, or take a break for a walk outdoors.

Bone conditions such as osteoporosis or arthritis can also lead to cervicalgia. As people age, their bones may start to thin and become more brittle. This increases the risk of fractures and other injuries. Arthritis is a condition that causes inflammation in the joints, which can lead to pain and stiffness in the neck.

Spinal diseases and infections such as meningitis can also cause cervicalgia. Meningitis is a serious infection that affects the brain and spinal cord. It can cause inflammation and damage to the spinal cord, leading to neck pain.



Symptoms of Cervicalgia

One of the most common symptoms of cervicalgia is pain in the neck region. This pain can be classified as sharp, dull, or stabbing. The severity of the pain can range from mild to severe, and it usually gets worse with movement.

Other symptoms include stiffness in the neck, headaches, shoulder tenderness, impaired neck movement, neck muscle spasms, nausea, and dizziness. Let us look at each one in detail

Neck Stiffness: One of the most common symptoms of cervicalgia is neck stiffness. This can make it difficult to move your neck and even lead to headaches.

Headaches are another symptom of cervicalgia, which can range from mild to severe. They may be accompanied by pain in other areas, such as the shoulder or back.

Shoulder Tenderness: Cervicalgia can cause tenderness in the shoulder area, which can make it difficult to move your arms.

Impaired Neck Movement: When cervicalgia is severe, the pain may be so intense that it limits your ability to move your neck in any direction.

Neck Muscle Spasms: Cervicalgia can cause neck muscles to spasm, leading to pain and discomfort.

Nausea and Dizziness: Cervicalgia can cause nausea and dizziness, which may accompany blurred vision or fatigue.



Treatment for Cervicalgia

Once the underlying causes of cervicalgia are identified, the treatment plan is tailored to each individual's needs. In most cases, cervicalgia can be treated at home, and the symptoms start to disappear within a few weeks of treatment. However, if the pain persists, it is essential to see a doctor to identify the underlying cause of the pain.

It is also important to avoid any activities that may lead to neck strain, such as using the computer too much or cycling. It is essential to allow the neck to receive maximum rest. If you suspect poor posture is the reason behind your neck pain, it is critical to take measures to correct your posture.

Medical professionals often recommend a combination of physical therapy, medications, and lifestyle modifications to help relieve symptoms.

Physical Therapy

Physical therapy focuses on stretching and strengthening exercises that target the neck muscles. This helps reduce pain and stiffness in the area and improves the range of motion. Finding an experienced physical therapist who understands cervicalgia and can help you create an effective treatment plan is essential.

Medications

If the pain is more severe, medications may be prescribed to reduce inflammation and relieve pain. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are commonly used to reduce inflammation and provide relief from pain.

Ice and Heat

Applying ice or heat to the neck can provide short-term relief from pain and stiffness. Ice helps reduce inflammation, while heat helps relax sore muscles.

Lifestyle Modifications

Making lifestyle modifications such as reducing stress, practicing good posture, and avoiding activities that strain the neck can also help ease cervicalgia symptoms. In addition, staying active and getting enough rest can help keep your neck muscles strong and flexible.



Preventing Cervicalgia

Like all other musculoskeletal injuries (MSIs), prevention is easier than cure for cervicalgia. You can take certain steps to lower the risk of it occuring. Let us look at a few.

Focus on Your Posture

Poor posture can lead to neck strain and tension, so it is essential to maintain good posture throughout the day. This means keeping your head straight and shoulders back instead of slouching or hunched over. It is also important to ensure your chair and desk are at the right height to maintain proper posture while working.

Stress Management

Chronic stress can lead to neck tension and pain, so it is essential to manage stress levels through relaxation exercises like yoga, meditation, or deep breathing. Taking breaks from work or activities that involve excessive use of the neck muscles can also help reduce tension in the area.

Exercise Regularly

Regular exercise helps keep your body and muscles strong and flexible. Low-impact exercises such as walking, swimming, or biking are great for keeping your neck healthy as they do not require strenuous movements. It is important to avoid exercises that involve jerking or sudden movements, as these can aggravate neck muscles.

Get Enough Rest and Sleep

Getting enough rest is essential for good health and helps reduce the risk of injury. Make sure to get at least 8 hours of sleep each night and take frequent breaks when engaging in activities that require repetitive motions, such as typing or playing an instrument.

Avoid Activities That Strain the Neck

Activities such as carrying heavy bags with one hand, sleeping on too many pillows, and using phones and laptops for long periods can increase strain on your neck muscles. Therefore, avoiding any activity that places unnecessary stress on the area is essential.

Invest in Ergonomic Solutions

Ergonomic solutions such as neck supports and adjustable chairs can help reduce neck strain and improve posture. Investing in these products is a great way to prevent cervicalgia, as they provide the proper support for your neck muscles while allowing you to maintain good posture.



Motorized AlcoveRiser EM7

Those who work desk jobs often become so immersed in their work that they forget to pay attention to their posture. One of the most common reasons for neck pain is incorrect monitor height. It is essential to keep your monitor at eye level if you want to avoid neck pain and other MSIs such as cervicalgia.

The Motorized AlcoveRiser EM7 is a perfect solution for keeping your monitor at the correct height, whether you work sitting or standing at your desk.

This ergonomic workstation is adjustable and has a sturdy base, allowing you to easily adjust the monitor height. It also features an easy-to-use height adjustment lever that allows you to easily switch between sitting and standing positions.

Patented X-lift structure and bracing system offers much better stabilization when raising and lowering, allowing for safer and more reliable operation. A 34.6'' wide U-shaped desktop cutout over the keyboard tray enables easy use with a 17'' laptop. It also features a quick-release design so you can quickly and easily remove it when needed. The 36''x 16.3'' work surface can holds two 21.5'' monitors, with room left over for activities, stationery, personal electronics, and other accessories.

In addition to providing better posture and convenience, the EM7 will also add to your workplace aesthetics. Top US designers imagined and designed it to give your workplace a modern look.

Investing in the Motorized AlcoveRiser EM7 can ensure that your monitor is at the right height while working, helping reduce the risk of cervicalgia and other MSIs. It also provides a modern look to your workspace, allowing you to work in style.

Final Thoughts

Cervicalgia can cause neck pain, which can be very difficult to manage. To prevent cervicalgia, keeping your neck muscles healthy and strong is essential. This includes avoiding activities that strain the area, investing in ergonomic solutions such as the Motorized AlcoveRiser EM7, and engaging in regular exercise. Additionally, getting enough rest and sleep is essential for maintaining neck health. By following these simple steps, you can reduce the risk of cervicalgia and keep your neck healthy and strong.