Cervicalgia is the common medial term used for neck pain. Neck pain can occur due to dysfunction in the muscles, joints, and or other structures located within the neck.
When dysfunction occurs, those structures will no longer work in unison when we ask our neck to move side to side or up and down, causing pain and stiffness. More serious neck disorders should be ruled out prior to a diagnosis of cervicalgia.
Neck pain is also frequently associated with headaches and loss in range of motion in the neck and shoulders. Since shoulder and jaw dysfunction can sometimes be mistaken as cervicalgia, your physical therapist will screen these areas to ensure the proper treatment is given.
What to expect from physical therapy
Your physical therapist will focus treatment based on your goals and functional limitations. Commonly, pain is treated with modalities and interventions such as ultrasound, soft tissue massage, heat, and other manual therapy techniques to control painful symptoms. Also, your therapist will thoroughly evaluate your neck for any mechanical dysfunction and restore normal mobility in order to decrease any stiffness and improve your ability to move your neck pain free.
If weakness is identified in the neck or postural muscles, your therapist will create an individualized home exercise program for you to compact these impairments not only during therapy but also for continued improvement well after discharge.