Neck pain is one of the top five chronic pain conditions causing disability worldwide (1). Neck pain is on the rise and has a large impact on a person’s overall well being and quality of life. Oftentimes, practitioners jump straight to addictive pain medications, or, worse yet, irreversible surgery, without considering alternative options. In fact, over 500,000 spinal fusion surgeries and 400,000 discectomies are performed every year for people who are dealing with chronic neck pain due to disc degeneration alone. Sometimes surgery is needed, but research has found that many of these invasive neck surgeries are unnecessary and only lead to additional surgeries in the future.
Although surgery can sometimes be absolutely necessary, surgery is a one way street and you may not need to go under the knife to ease your neck pain. There are several effective alternative treatments that can help you avoid surgery. We’ve compiled a list of 4 ways to overcome chronic neck pain without surgery.
After an acute injury that just took place, taking a couple days to rest can help settle down your pain. Before jumping straight into an irreversible surgery, give your neck time to recover naturally. But believe it or not, resting too much or completely immobilizing your neck can actually do more harm than good! If we don’t move at all because we’re scared of pain, the body can become fearful of any movement to the point that even normal movement causes pain. After resting initially, a gradual increase back to activity can make a big impact. We actually need to return to movement in order for the body to learn that not all movement causes pain, and not all pain equals damage.
The first step to addressing neck pain is to adjust your biomechanics. If you can get the muscles moving properly, muscles and nerves will work as they should and this alone can help alleviate pain. As you rewire the biomechanics, avoid high-impact exercises or sports like jogging, aerobics, and mountain biking that jar your neck. Switch to low impact exercises and limit your overhead work. By simply switching up your exercise regime you can help improve your cervical disc and manage your pain. Adjusting exercises based on your specific condition can be done under the guidance of a physical therapist (2).
Neck surgery oftentimes can and should be avoided. It is worth the time to seek out a second opinion for the best long term outcome. Talk with Dr. Patel and his team at The Patel Center for Functional Regeneration. He has years of expertise in treating patients with non-surgical treatments. Dr. Patel will give you his objective and educated advice on the state of your neck and spine. So, you know whether or not surgery is truly necessary for you at this time.
There are some effective non-surgical treatments that can help you avoid neck surgery.
You may not need to go under the knife to ease your neck pain. There are several effective alternative treatments that can help you avoid surgery. Talk to our experienced team at The Patel Center for Functional Regeneration in Los Angeles and Orange County about your options for non-surgical neck treatments. Dr. Patel’s top priority is to provide every patient with exceptional care and give patients the most thorough evaluation and customized treatment plan. For more information contact Dr. Patel’s patient concierge team at email@example.com.