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Most episodes of neck pain are due to muscle strain or soft tissue sprain (ligaments, tendons), but it can also be caused by a sudden force (whiplash). These types of neck pain often improve with time and non-surgical care such as medication and chiropractic manipulation. But if neck pain continues or worsens, there is often a specific condition that requires treatment, such as cervical degenerative disc disease, cervical herniated disc, cervical stenosis, or cervical arthritis.
Neck pain can be associated with
tingling in the arms
weakness of the arms
Low Back Pain
The lower back is an intricate structure of interconnected and overlapping elements:
Tendons and muscles and other soft tissues
Highly sensitive nerves and nerve roots that travel from the lower back down into the legs and feet
Small and complex joints
Spinal discs with their gelatinous inner cores.
An irritation or problem with any of these structures can cause lower back pain and/or pain that radiates or is referred to other parts of the body. Pain from resultant lower back muscle spasms can be severe, and pain from a number of syndromes can become chronic.
While lower back pain is extremely common, the symptoms and severity of lower back pain vary greatly. A simple lower back muscle strain might be excruciating enough to necessitate an emergency room visit, while a degenerating disc might cause only mild, intermittent discomfort. Identifying the symptoms, along with an accurate diagnosis of the underlying cause of the pain, is the first step in obtaining effective pain relief.
It’s been about 2,000 years in the making, but acupuncture is becoming more mainstream. Research shows that the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis (RA), osteoarthritis (OA), and fibromyalgia might be treated with acupuncture, But how?
The ancient – and current – theory of acupuncture goes like this: An essential life energy called qi (pronounced “chee”) flows through the body along 20 invisible channels called meridians. When the flow of this energy is blocked or out of balance, illness or pain occurs. More than 2,000 acupuncture points connect to the meridians. Stimulating those points with needles may correct the flow and alleviate pain.
When speaking with his patients, Tim Rhudy, a licensed acupuncturist in the department of pain management at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio, explains that acupuncture diminishes pain by “untying muscular straitjackets – releasing tight, spasmed, shortened muscles to their resting state.”
It also helps regulate the body’s nervous system, which can stimulate the release of natural pain-fighting endorphins.
And there’s more: Acupuncture tells the body where the battle is. When you cut your hand, the body sends help to the injury site.