At your first visit, your chiropractor will determine the source and causes of your pain and make certain adjustments to your neck to loosen stiff muscles in your joints. In this post we are going to talk about some of the most common techniques used by chiropractors to treat neck pain.
Common Chiropractic Techniques for Neck Pain
As a patient, you will be asked to lie on your back and relax while your chiropractic doctor will manually move your neck vertebrae with his hands from right to left and vice versa.
The practitioner will alternate between the figure 8 movement and the side to side movement to move the head in all possible directions. He will not feel much discomfort as the process involves a non-thrusting type of stretching that would help reduce stiffness in the cervical spine segments. Chiropractors have also been known to use an oscillating motion with their hands during the cervical mobilization process.
Cervical manual traction
During this process, you need to lie on your back or sit upright. The chiropractor will gently pull on your neck and stretch your cervical spine at two angles, often alternating between flexion (forward) and extension (backward). In this way, the chiropractor would determine the correct angle that would help reduce stiffness effectively.
Typically, the cervical manual traction technique is used in conjunction with the cervical mobilization technique for the most effective results.
Cervical drop techniques
In this technique, you have to lie on your stomach or side on a special type of table where the ‘drop piece’ at the top is lifted up and placed in a locked position. Next, the chiropractor places his hand on the part of your spinal segment that needs adjustment. A gentle but high-velocity downward thrust pressure is applied until the “drop piece” of the table loosens and drops slightly.
The goal of this treatment is to reduce the restricted movement of the cervical vertebrae with the help of the specially created lowering table. Unlike other chiropractic treatment processes, this one does not involve the traditional practice of neck rotation or joint cavitations.
Visit a chiropractic doctor when:
• The stiffness in your neck does not improve even after a week.
• Cannot look to the right or left without experiencing a twinge in the neck
• When over-the-counter pain relievers don’t work
• When your neck pain has spread to other parts of the body such as wrists and hands
• When the bread is worse in the morning and improves as the day goes on