Neck and Back Pain in Happy Valley


Have a headache that seems to happen several times a month, or week? Ever feel like it wraps over your head and just might cause your eye to pop out and fly around the room? There is a good chance that they are actually cervicogenic (starting or coming from the neck) headaches and through some basic interventions can be resolved. There are three main culprits that commonly cause this type of pain, the upper trapezius, levator scapulae, and suboccipital muscles. These powerful muscles not only play a large role in the posture of your neck, but assist in carrying, lifting and protecting your neck from injury. However, when they are improperly used they can compress and irritate the extensive network of nerves in the back of your neck and into your scalp, causing persistent and intense headaches.

Low Back Pain (LBP)

No, it’s not normal to have back pain from sitting at your desk, driving to work or even the lifting and carrying that you need to do with yard work. If it seems like has become part of your routine it is time to have a physical therapist check out alternatives to “injury-rest-repeat.” Pain is your bodies way of telling you that something isn’t right. LBP has become a staple of the plight of the 9-5’er and weekend warrior. While there are many causes of LBP, frequently it is from postural and technique problems with your day-to-day activities. Learning to reduce the load that you put on your back, strengthening support muscles of the trunk and learning to move with safe patterns will help reduce, if not resolve your pain.

Whiplash (WAD)

Commonly the result of a trauma, whether direct or indirect such as falling on your head/neck or a car accident. You may experience stiffness or tightness sensations throughout your neck and upper back as well as aching or pain associated with movement of your head. Depending on the severity, this can take a few weeks to months for resolution. Occasionally concussions, of some degree, are associated with whiplash. Contact your physical therapist for consultation and developing a plan for a safe recovery.

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