Learn the upper back and neck pain symptoms, treatment, and exercises to feel better
What falls into this category?
- Disc injuries (bulge, prolapse, herniation, annular tear)
- Chronic pain
- Facet joint sprain/rib sprain
- Thoracic Outlet Syndrome or pinched nerve
- Ergonomic issues (workplace posture)
- Tension (stress, anxiety)
- Whiplash associated disorders (Motor vehicle accidents)
What are the symptoms?
- Pain which may worsen in certain prolonged neck positions
- Pain with sitting or moving
- Muscle tightness and spasms
- Numbness or tingling into arms
- Restriction of breathing
- Loss of motion and stiffness of neck or back
When should I get treatment?
If your pain is interfering with your everyday life or if it’s gone on too long. We recommend you seek immediate help if your neck and back pain has arisen from an injury, such as lifting, a motor vehicle or a fall. It is also recommended to seek treatment if you are experiencing severe pain, persistent pain without relief, pain spreading down your arms or legs, or pain that is accompanied by a headache, numbness, weakness or tingling.
What treatments help?
- Education – what is it, what can you do and how can it go away?
- Exercises or stretches
- Manual therapy – hands on massage or stretching
- Management of aggravating factors
- Postural and Lifestyle assessment (home and work ergonomics)
- In some cases, medication, corticosteroid injections, or surgery may be required