Why do I have chronic neck pain and headaches?

Chronic Neck Pain and Headaches

There it is again. That tension in your neck that you know will soon morph into a headache. Many people carry tension in their shoulders and neck from life stress or poor posture, and this can occasionally lead to neck pain or headaches. However, people who have been dealing with these issues for months at a time might be dealing with chronic neck pain and headaches. 

How do you know if your neck pain and headaches are chronic?

Chronic pain and long-term pain are the same thing, and neck pain is typically considered to be chronic when it lasts for more than three to six months. The medical definition of chronic headaches is slightly different. Most doctors consider headaches to be chronic if they meet two criteria: The headaches must occur at least 15 days per month, and this pattern must continue for at least three months. 

Three issues that can cause chronic neck pain and headaches

Various issues can lead to chronic neck pain and headaches. However, there are some that medical professionals see more often than others. Three of the most common causes are: 

  1. Neck injuriesCar accidents can torque the neck and injure its soft tissue. Playing high-impact sports can also injure your neck. Falls can lead to both soft tissue injuries and neck vertebrae fractures, and any of these injuries could be the source of long-term neck pain that causes frequent headaches. 
  1. Cervical osteoarthritis — The neck vertebrae are each connected by a pair of joints called facet joints. Injuries and natural wear and tear can cause osteoarthritis to develop in these joints. In turn, cervical osteoarthritis could cause neck pain, headaches and decreased neck mobility. 
  1. Degenerative disc disease — Another type of wearing that occurs in the neck as you age is wearing of the discs between your cervical vertebrae. The worn discs lead to less space between vertebrae, and this can cause pinched nerves and other issues, including neck pain and headaches. 

Physical therapists at Advent Physical Therapy can help treat chronic neck pain and headaches

Are you fed up with the neck pain and headaches you’re dealing with every day? Advent Physical Therapy has specialists who can help treat these issues. Our team can start your therapy process with a complimentary screening. We’ll then use the data we gather to create a therapy plan that’s individualized to your needs, and your treatment program could make use of therapy techniques like: 

 

Take the next step to start getting our help with your chronic pain. Contact our team today for more information or to schedule your initial appointment.