Acupuncture for neck pain in Dublin
Neck pain is a very common issue affecting at least two out of three persons. In most cases, neck pain can be annoying but not serious. When chronic, it can seriously disturb one’s quality of life.
Why is the neck a sensitive area?
The neck is an area of the body making the junction between the head and the torso. The cervical spine which is mobile and composed of seven vertebrae is the main supporting element. Around the spine, there are muscles, ligaments and tendons which stabilise the neck. Intervertebral discs which are found between the vertebrae act like cushions to absorb shocks.
The cervical spine has two main functions:
- support the head
- protect the spinal cord, an important element of the central nervous system.
The neck supports the head which is one of the heaviest part of the body. As a result, a lot of tensions can accumulate in this area.
Different kind of neck pain:
- Non-specific neck pain:
Non-specific means that the origin of the pain and its cause remain unknown. This is the most common type of neck pain and it includes minor strains and muscle and ligaments sprains of the neck.
Whiplash is typically caused by a car accident. It happens when the head is suddenly and forcibly jolted backwards and forwards or rotated. Muscles and ligaments can be stretched beyond their normal abilities resulting in tears and trauma. In some cases, it can cause serious neck injury and it is important to be inspected by a doctor first to rule out any serious complication.
- Torticollis, crick or wry neck:
Torticollis means “twisted” neck. The onset of torticollis is in general quick. It can happen overnight or in the space of a few hours. Causes are not always known however situations such as a bad posture, doing a wrong movement, or leaving the neck exposed to cold can be triggers for torticollis.
- Wear and Tears (cervical spondylosis):
It is a common cause of chronic neck pain. In general, it affects older people as it is caused by a slow degeneration of the cervical spine and discs and is often associated with arthritis in the neck.
- Cervical radiculopathy:
When a disc doesn’t act as a cushion anymore or when there is too much degeneration in the neck, nerves leaving the vertebrae towards the upper body can be compressed.
When this happens, people can experience symptoms such as numbness, pins and needles and weakness along the affected nerve towards arms, hands and fingers.
How can acupuncture help?
Most research done on the treatment neck pain has shown that acupuncture is an efficient and safe treatment.
A few studies demonstrated that acupuncture associated with massage were delivering good results. In our treatments of neck pain, nearly systematically we also use Chinese therapeutic massage (Tui Na) which greatly benefits our patients.
For neck pain, acupuncture:
- Stimulates the release of endorphins and the natural body’s painkillers
- Reduces inflammation
- Improves muscles support, reduces muscles stiffness and improves joint mobility.
- Improves microcirculation in the neck which reduces swelling.
Sources: BAcC factsheet (Neck pain)
Neck pain is a condition frequently seen in the clinic. Combining acupuncture and Chinese Therapeutic massage (Tui Na) gives very positive results. Patients feel the difference immediately reporting a freer neck, less pain and a feeling of lightness. When used with acupuncture, Tui Na is included in the treatment at no extra-cost.
For more information, call us on 083 402 9467