How Many Types Of Headaches Are There
Headaches come in many sizes and pain levels, however, there are four distinct types of a headaches:
Serious debilitating headaches are a warning that you should seek medical attention tension headaches, however, are most often just a nagging annoyance, though some can be painful enough to disrupt your daily activities.
About Your Neck Pain And Headaches
Simultaneously, muscles in our neck and scalp may contract. These muscle contractions occur when we are faced with stress, anxiety, or depression. When these muscles contract they often cause dull, nagging headaches that often turn into full-blown migraine headaches.
Robert Gotlin, DO, director of Orthopaedics and Sports Rehabilitation at Beth Israel Medical Center in New York City says this about neck pain,
As stress goes up I definitely see more patients with neck pain. Every year around tax time, the number of patients with neck pain increases, especially among Wall Street types here in New York.
Another cause of neck pain is structural and results from a neck joint issue. This type of a headache is known as a neck headache or more properly as a Cervicogenic headache. Research shows that fixing the neck can end a headache. The joints usually associated in a neck headache are:
- Atlanto-occipital joint
- Atlanto-axial joint
- C2/3 cervical spine joints
When your neck joints are too tight, a headache can result in just a few minutes. Not all stress is bad, however. Stress within your comfort level helps you to perform under pressure, keep you motivated and to keep you safe when danger is evident.
A Twisted Or Locked Neck
Some people suddenly wake up one morning to find their neck twisted to one side and stuck in that position. This is known as acute torticollis and is caused by injury to the neck muscles.
The exact cause of acute torticollis is unknown.
It may be caused by:
- bad posture
- sleeping without adequate neck support
- carrying heavy unbalanced loads
Acute torticollis can take up to a week to get better, but it usually only lasts 24 to 48 hours.
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Professional Care For Stress
Are you experiencing neck pain that is exacerbated by stress? We are an integrative medical center with a bold philosophy: surgery isnt always the answer. At Envista Medical in Bakersfield, we work with you to develop a holistic plan that uses non-surgical, minimally invasive methods for pain treatment.
Anxiety And Neck Pain: Causes And Solutions
- Neck pain is a frequent and common anxiety symptom.
- Anxiety often causes the pain itself through muscle tension.
- Anxiety may also have several related symptoms that eventually cause neck pain.
- For some, neck pain may also be a cause of anxiety, fueling health fears or distress.
- It is possible to treat neck pain independently, though in the long term it will become more important to treat anxiety.
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Stretch But Avoid Sudden Movements
Stretching can help relieve the pain and stiffness, and prevent it in the future. Its important to stretch gently and slowly. Sudden movements can cause more inflammation, pain, and a more serious injury. Apply a heating pad or take a warm shower before stretching.
- Roll your shoulders backward and then forward in a circle.
- Press your shoulder blades together and hold the position for a few seconds, then repeat.
- Slowly turn your head from side to side.
How To Relieve Neck And Eye Strain
Because of anxiety in work, most of us do not give much importance to our workplace diets. One of the commonest problems, which people face as work health issues, is straining of the neck and eyes due to constant work. Today, we are going to give you ten simple steps to ease your eye strain and neck pain due to stress at work.
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Know When To See Your Chiropractor
If your neck pain subsides but then comes back over the course of a few weeks, consult with your local chiropractor for help. Even if the some of these treatment methods that alleviated your symptoms were originally helpful, if they no longer provide relief, you need to have your neck examined.
- You should also see a chiropractor if you feel constant numbness or neck pain, even after youve rested or if your neck begins to feel weaker.
- Seek immediate treatment if your neck pain symptoms are severe or your skin feels cold or appears very pale or blue.
The local chiropractors at Fulk Chiropractic specialize in neck pain relief through chiropractic treatment. By using gentle chiropractic adjustments, they have helped thousands of Kansas City area patients alleviate the pain that often results from a pinched nerve in your neck.
To see if chiropractic can help with your specific condition, call 913-76406237 to speak with one of the doctors on call.
Is Stress The Cause Of Neck Pain
The answer to this question is, yes. Stress can cause neck pain. In fact, the study shows that psychological problems, such as anxiety and depression are major determinants of neck pain.
A stress can lead to a neck pain, and a stress-induced neck pain cannot be ignored. The statistics show that around 1 in 5 Americans is diagnosed with some sort of mental disorder every single year. This is not a matter to be taken lightly at all.
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How Stress Increases Neck And Shoulder Pain
Stress isnt always the cause of neck and , but it can certainly make even the smallest existing pain much worse. Heres how it affects your neck and shoulders.
Enlarges the blood vessels in your large muscle groups to allow faster oxygen delivery
Causes you to clench and tighten muscles in the neck, jaw and shoulders
Increases tension in the trapezius muscles that run across the top of the back
Restricts neck and shoulder movement
Heightens your perception of pain and makes existing pain feel worse
When you experience mental or physical stress again and again, your body is constantly prepared for battle but is never allowed to release that tension. Eventually this irritates your muscles and nerves, causing pain that can be difficult to manage because its difficult to pinpoint or remove your stress triggers.
How Does The Stress Response Work
A blend of physical and emotional components that have a part in pushing your body to take action whenever you are faced with danger is known as a stress response. Many hormones, such as cortisol, adrenaline, and others are released by the body whenever the brain is triggered.
These hormones prepare the body for action. All these hormones can lead to various physical and psychological changes. Some of the physical changes that are caused by these stress hormones are increased blood pressure, rapid breathing, tensed muscles, and increased blood pressure.
These physical changes in the body could lead to irritated nerves, pains, and aches when it happens on a regular basis.
These reactions and changes happen to us in tiny spurts all day, and these reactions are not always bad. In fact, these reactions can work well to keep our body protected from harms. These stress reactions are not bad until and unless a person goes through chronic stress. Once a person goes through chronic stress, all the unwanted problems start to appear.
Chronic stress and neck pain could go head to head in some cases. Chronic stress could be either due to physical stress where a person needs to work beyond his/her physical capacity or it could be emotional stress due to tragic events or a financial problem. Now, the question is how this stress can cause neck pain.
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Reduce The Amount Of Glare
The mirror-like and self-illuminated properties of the computer screens reflect the external light of the screen to create glares that strain our eyes severely. This can be avoided by reducing the room lighting by installing shades or blinds. Also, use of anti-reflection screen helps in eliminating the glares.
Take Care When You Sleep
Dr. Bang says if your neck is bothering you, you also should pay attention to your sleep positions. Sleep only on your side or on your back never on your stomach, he says.
When you sleep on your stomach, often you will end up twisting your head one way or the other for hours at a time, Dr. Bang says. Sleeping on your stomach also can affect your low back because your belly sinks in to the bed if you dont have enough support.
For minor, common causes of neck pain, try these simple remedies:
- Apply heat or ice to the painful area. Use ice for the first 48 to 72 hours, then use heat after that. Heat may be applied with warm showers, hot compresses or a heating pad. Be sure not to fall asleep with a heating pad or ice bag in place to avoid skin injuries.
- Take over-the-counter pain relievers such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen.
- Keep moving, but avoid jerking or painful activities. This helps calm your symptoms and reduce inflammation.
- Do slow range-of-motion exercises, up and down, side to side, and from ear to ear. This helps to gently stretch the neck muscles.
- Have a partner gently massage the sore or painful areas.
- Try sleeping on a firm mattress without a pillow or with a special neck pillow.
- Ask your health care provider about using a soft neck collar to relieve discomfort. Dont use the collar for a long time. Doing so can make your neck muscles weaker.
If the pain gets in the way of your daily activities, Dr. Bang says to call your doctor.
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Signs Of Neck And Shoulder Pain
Dr. Delavaux says that individuals should pay attention to the following signs of neck pain:
- Pain thats often worsened by holding your head in one position for a prolonged period
- Muscle tightness and/or spasms
Additionally, he notes that you should be aware of the following signs of shoulder pain:
- Inability to use the shoulder or move your arm away from your body
- Intense pain
- Sudden swelling
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, you should call your doctor immediately and see if they offer in-person or virtual visits, advises Dr. Delavaux. Dont wait too long, as this may worsen the underlying problem of the pain.
Stretching Can Keep Pain At Bay
Putting your monitor at eye level, sitting up straight and avoiding tilting and twisting your head down or to the side while youre on the computer can help you avoid neck pain. When youre driving or looking at your smart phone, be sure to take frequent breaks and avoid having your neck bent forward for long periods of time, Dr. Bang says.
The key to relief for a stiff neck is proper stretching and manipulation, Dr. Bang says. Here are some stretches you can try at your desk or in the car that may help you to avoid a stiff neck:
- Roll your shoulders backwards and down 10 times.
- Squeeze your shoulder blades together 10 times.
- Push your head backwards into your car head rest or hands and hold for 30 seconds.
- Bring your ear to your shoulder 10 times on each side.
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Can I Prevent Neck And Back Pain
The following may help to prevent back and neck pain:
- Practice correct lifting techniques. Don’t lift heavy items. When you do lift something, bend your legs, keep your back straight, and then slowly lift your body and the object.
- Wear a seat belt in motor vehicles in case of a collision.
- Use telephones, computers, and other equipment correctly.
- Maintain correct posture while sitting, standing, and sleeping.
- Exercise regularly. Learn back-strengthening exercises to keep your back and belly muscles strong. Warm up with stretching exercises before doing exercises.
- Do exercises that improve your balance.
- Don’t smoke.
- Stay at a healthy weight.
- Reduce emotional stress that may cause muscle tension.
- Get enough vitamin D and calcium in your diet.
Clinical Contributors To This Story
Laurent Delavaux, M.D. contributes to topics such as Orthopedics, Rehabilitation , Physical Medicine.
Working from home may be the new normal for some individuals given the COVID-19 pandemicbut did you know that the layout of your home office may affect your overall neck and shoulder health?
Laurent Delavaux, M.D., an interventional pain physician at JFK Johnson Rehabilitation Institute, says that roughly 10-25% of individuals will have new neck pain each year while another 7-34% of people will experience new shoulder pain. These ailments are becoming increasingly more common given that many of us use computers or phones more frequently throughout the day, shares the expert.
Dr. Delavaux explains three common work-related scenarios that can lead to neck and/or shoulder pain and provides helpful solutions:
Problem: I have bad posture while working on a laptop, computer or phone. According to Dr. Delavaux, bad posture is when an individual rounds his or her upper back and head forward while also rounding the shoulders forward. This puts a lot of stress on your neck and certain shoulder muscles, he says.
Solution: Fix your posture. Dr. Delavaux advises that individuals practice good posture. This is when the shoulders are relaxed but pulled back, with the chest open and head level with ears at the level of the shoulders, he says. Techniques to improve your posture include:
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What Causes The Neck To Hurt When Youre Stressed Or Anxious
Pain is typically caused by an automatic reaction in the musculoskeletal and nervous systems after the body experiences trauma. However, stress-related pains in the neck are usually the result of emotionally-driven anxiety, which affects the primary muscles and nerves running through the spine, shoulders, and neck.
Becoming so stressed out or anxious that you begin to tense up could cause harm to your body, even if only temporarily. Meanwhile, long-term tension could create a snowball effect that might lead to chronic neck or back pain. Because of the potentially damaging effects that stress can have on the body, its reasonable to consider neck pain remedies before the situation gets out of hand.
Awareness Of The Physical Effects Of Stress
I’ve experienced increased neck pain after several car accidents in past years. But I realize that my physical injuries aren’t the only source of neck pain or shoulder pain. Links between my emotions and my pain are well-documented by research. To relieve neck pain, both reducing stress and relaxing the neck and shoulders are vital.
You can ask yourself two questions. Do you tend to notice generalized pain or specific types of pain more often when youre stressed? Once you observe the stress that enters your life, you can relate that with times when the first symptom of pain occurs. Describe the stress that’s in your life whenever you notice neck muscles in pain.
The next question involves describing the pain in more detail. What types of physical pain do you have when you feel stressed? Is it only in the neck? Are there other related painful areas that you notice?
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What Causes Anxiety Neck Pain
The main cause of neck pain appears to be tension. During extremely anxious moments, your muscles contract and tense up significantly. Whenever you hear of individuals needing to get back or neck massages for knots in their muscles, it is often due to stress-induced muscle tension. This muscle tension especially targets the neck, shoulders, and back. The more anxiety you undergo, the more your tension may cause significant pain and discomfort.
Mindset means everything, especially in anxiety sufferers. Many people get muscle tension in their neck even if they do not have anxiety however, those with anxiety tend to be more prone to noticing and focusing on it. Unfortunately, anxiety can cause people to fixate more on negative sensations unintentionally. This can make the neck pain feel more severe than it would to someone without anxiety, despite the pain being similar objectively.
How Does Stress Cause Tension In Your Neck And Shoulders
When your body and mind experience a little bit of stress, it can motivate you to get things done. But at times, the amount of stress becomes larger than the energy you have to motivate yourself.
If you can’t make constructive use of the stress, then it tends to show up in physical symptoms. Difficult emotions and muscle tension in vulnerable parts of the body are some of those ways. Your sleep patterns also could change. This lowers your resilience to stress even further.
Reacting to stress in harmful ways can involve bad habits. Some people develop habits like smoking, alcohol use, and others. Stress, bad habits, and chronic neck pain are a vicious cycle. Not only do bad habits and pain increase stress, but the opposite is true. Stress can also increase pain and the tendency to make unhealthy choices.
Lack of exercise and poor diet affects your mind. In turn, your neck, shoulders, and head respond to your mental state.
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How Are Back And Neck Pain Managed
Acute back pain usually gets better without special treatment. Using acetaminophen or ibuprofen as directed will decrease pain and help you rest. Surgery and special exercises are generally not used with acute pain.
For severe, disabling, or chronic back and neck pain, rehabilitation programs can be designed to meet your needs. The type of program will depend on the cause and the type and severity of your pain, injury, or disease. Your active involvement is key to the success of rehab programs.
The goal of back and neck rehab is to help you manage disabling pain. It’s also important to return you to your highest level of functioning and independence, and improve your quality of life. The focus of rehab is on easing pain, improving movement. It also focuses on limiting any additional damage, and increasing your functional ability.
To help reach these goals, back and neck rehab programs may include:
- Exercise programs to improve range of motion, increase muscle strength, improve flexibility and mobility, and increase endurance
- Help with assistive devices that keep you independent
- Education and counseling
- Gait and movement retraining
- Stress management
- Ergonomic assessments and work-related injury prevention programs
- Job counseling