Archive for October, 2011
It is easy to identify stiff neck problems. It is normally recognized due to soreness and the difficulty faced in neck movement. There are several other conditions that may arise as a result of stiff neck such as arm pain, shoulder pain or headache. These conditions may not allow the neck to move backwards or sideways. Stiff neck is indeed a very painful body condition.
You may feel neck stiffness symptoms for a week or for a few days, and there is a chance that the pain may reoccur, ranging from a less painful condition to a severely painful condition. While in some cases, neck stiffness tends to become a chronic state if left untreated, in most cases, like acute neck stiffness, you can overcome the pain due to the recuperative and durable characteristics of the cervical spine.
The following are the general causes of a stiff neck:
Muscle Sprain or Strain
By far, this is considered the major Stiff Neck Causes. Positioned at the side and back of the neck, a particular muscle known as the levator scapula muscle joins the shoulder with the neck (cervical spine). The control of this muscle is basically held with the 3rd and 4th cervical nerves.
This particular muscle can be sprained or strained all the way through many common courses such as:
Injuries occurred at different sporting activities that causes strain in the neck
Odd sleeping positions that affect the neck muscles
Activities that require constant head movement
Bad neck postures, such as drooping while watching TV
Positioning the neck in an odd posture for a longer while
Extra stress that leads to strain in the neck
Meningitis – A Bacterial Infection
Along with headache, high fever, sleepiness and nausea, a stiff neck can be an indication pointing towards meningitis. It is a bacterial infection that causes the outer protective membranes of the spinal cord and brain to be reddened. There are several other infections that can cause neck stiffness such as meningococcal disease – a cervical spine infection. Whenever you get a stiff neck along with high fever, you must seek medical assistance immediately.
Cervical Spine Disorders
If there is any problem with the cervical spine, it is likely that it will result in neck stiffness. For instance, a cervical osteoarthritis or cervical herniated disc can cause stiff neck problems. Moreover, as the nerve pathways and structures in the cervical spine are all interrelated, problems occurring in either of these areas can result in muscle stiffness.
It is highly recommended to look for medical assistance if the stiff neck symptoms stick around even after a week.