All day and everyday your neck is responsible for twisting, turning, bending and supporting approximately 10-12 pounds of your head everywhere you go. Given that your neck works all the time while watching TV, looking at your computer monitor, exercising or simply sleeping on an uncomfortable pillow. It is not surprising that 10-12% of our population is currently experiencing neck pain.
Like back pain, neck pain often has no obvious cause. Certainly psychological stress which causes muscle tension can play a role, along with poor posture or carrying heavy bags. A common injury known as whiplash can also result in chronic neck pain. Anything that causes muscular tension or stretching of the supportive connective tissue can lead to neck pain which can evolve into a referred muscle pain pattern, resulting in headaches.
The muscle tension often experienced with neck pain can be efficiently relieved with acupuncture. Additionally it has the ability to heal connective tissue problems commonly seen with whiplash injuries. Acupuncture’s unique ability to release endorphins and promote muscular relaxation also relieves cervical trigger points associated with headaches.
Acupuncture can stop the frustrating cycle of muscle spasms, pain and eventually loss of function by increasing circulation to the muscles and prompting the body to heal itself. Even in chronic conditions acupuncture can mobilize the body intrinsic healing abilities.
The diagrams below illustrate how muscular reaction patterns can lead to different types of neck pain, depending on the referral pattern of the affected musculature. Acupuncture points (trigger points) are marked “X” and are some of the most effective points to treat the associated referral pain patterns.