The internet is a fantastic way of finding out information about virtually any subject. Unfortunately, there can sometimes be too much information; making it hard to know what is right or not. This is why, if you do have neck pain, you should seek the expert help of Wellers Hill Physio. The internet cannot be a substitute for years of training and experience!
That’s not to say it can’t be helpful, especially when you have a worrying concern, such as can neck pain be a sign of something serious?
The good news is that neck pain is not generally serious. But, as with any pain, if it continues you should see a specialist.
If your neck pain matches the following three criteria, then you need t have it investigated further:
- Pain has continued for approximately 6 weeks.
- There is no sign of improvement, or it’s getting worse.
have one other major symptom:
- You’re over 55 or under 20.
- You have fever, nausea, or a bad headache.
- Numbness or tingling in your neck and elsewhere in your body.
- Severe stiffness
This doesn’t mean that the news is bad but you should definitely consult your doctor. Don’t forget that you know your body best if the pain or stiffness is really worrying you, don’t wait 6 weeks to see a specialist, sooner is often better.
Additionally, if you’ve recently had an obvious cause for the neck pain, such as an accident, then seek help immediately.
Sharp Neck Pains
These can feel the worst. But, if there are no other symptoms this type of pain is almost certain to be nothing more than a temporary irritation.
The body generally responds to musculoskeletal issues by over-reacting; giving you a sharp, intense pain and is probably the result of a pulled muscle, nerve or even too much cold air around your neck. Although it is not easy to irritate the thick tangle of nerves within your spine, it is possible and this will cause sharp pain.
Throbbing pans are much more likely to be an issue that needs to be looked at.
This is usually a result of sitting in an awkward position or something similar. It can be annoying but should pass relatively quickly and is harmless.
The exception is when you’ve experienced a stiff neck for an extended period of time and there are other symptoms. An inability to tilt your head forward accompanied by flu-like symptoms can be indicative of meningitis and should be checked as soon as possible.
Other Medical Issues
The following issues all cause neck pain, but it is merely a symptom of the issue and not a problem in itself. Knowing what these are will help you to understand when neck pain could be something more serious:
- Skin problems on the neck.
- Bornholm disease – this is a viral infection which can also cause a vice-like grip on your chest but is not actually dangerous.
- Trichinosis – this is actually a parasite which is obtained by eating raw or undercooked pork and wild game. It can cause spasms and widespread muscle pain and can be serious.
- Temporal Arteritis – You’ll usually find this is connected to other diseases and you’ll also have severe headaches, vision issues and ringing in the ears. Get it checked.
- Lymphadenopathy – swollen lymph nodes are uncomfortable but rarely dangerous; they are usually a symptom of other issues in your body.
- Thyroiditis – your thyroid gland is n your throat and can cause pain if it is inflamed. If you’re getting tired a lot and gaining weight you may have an issue with thyroid production. It’s not dangerous but you do need to get it checked.