WHAT IS IT? POSTURAL NECK PAIN

  • Postural neck pain is as it sounds.  Pain can be attributed to abnormal positioning of the body in conjunction with poor ergonomics.

 

Signs and symptoms

  • Neck ache which may extend to the shoulders and shoulder blades
  • Stiffness of neck movements
  • Headaches
  • Pain has gradual onset, worsening throughout day
  • Aggravated by sitting, prolonged postures, repetitive work duties
  • Eased with heat, movement, and pain medication

 

 

WHAT CAUSES IT?

  • Weak deep neck flexor, lower trapezius and other relevant muscles
  • Increased lordosis of neck (chin poking position)
  • Forward head posture
  • Protracted or rounded shoulders
  • Unsupportive seating
  • Incorrect work station set up (computer, chair, table)
  • Activities involving sustained postures
  • Repetitive activities
  • Increased neural tension
  • Tight muscles
  • Hypomobile vertebrae and joint
HOW TO SELF MANAGE
  • Try to be aware of your posture when pain comes on, to identify contributing factors

  • Reduce the time spent in one position or duty

  • Organise OH&S to do a work station assessment

  • Use heat to reduce pain

  • Seek postural assessment and exercises to address contributing factors

PROGNOSIS
  • It is likely that if posture is not addressed, or aggravating activities modified, then pain will be on going.

  • Education and awareness is vital for self-correction.  Pilates is an ideal method of improving stability and correcting posture.

HOW PHYSIO HELPS?
  • Joint mobilisation

  • Massage and trigger point release

  • Acupuncture or dry needling

  • Taping

  • Ergonomic assessment

  • Pilates education

  • Deep cervical flexor muscle retraining

  • Posture assessment and education (cervical and thoracic spine, scapular position)

  • Stretches (neck, pec muscle)

 

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