Imagine holding a bowling ball all day, everyday, over your head. Can you feel your shoulder muscles getting sore? Can you imagine walking to work, sitting at your computer, cleaning your house, playing with your kids, and all the time holding that bowling ball over your head? Well, that is essentially what your neck is doing all day. All day, everyday, with few rests in between when you lie down, your neck is holding up your head, which actually weighs a little more than an average bowling ball. In addition, if you are like most people then you probably don't walk around with perfect posture all the time. You probably tend to carry your head in front of your body. If you do, then it is more similar to holding the bowling ball in front of your head--which is even harder!
It is no wonder that so many people develop neck pain! However, just because you have ne...
“Lene, you’re a neurological accident waiting to happen.”
My rheumatologist had ordered X-rays of my neck and the results showed that my rheumatoid arthritis (RA) had made the top joint unstable. This was how the doctor told me. They wrote an order for a CT scan to get more detail. Then I waited six weeks for the scan and another six for the results. Thankfully, the CT scan showed that the joint wasn’t in fact unstable.
I refer to those three months as the time my head was loose.
Image credit: Samo Trebizan
RA and spine joints
When it comes to the spine, RA can be either a pain in the butt or a pain in the neck. There is some disagreement in rheumatology about whether RA can affect the spine itself or if it should more accurately be called rheumatoid spondylitis, ankylosing spondylitis, or even osteoarthritis. However, there is agreement that RA can affect the two joints in the spine. One is the sacroiliac or SI joint . It is located...
Chronic pain is a fact of life for many people. Studies show that fear of pain and avoidance of activity can cause further disability. In this study, researchers look at other patterns of activity and their impact on pain. Almost 300 men and women with chronic pain were included. More than half had back pain. The rest had pain elsewhere in the body. There were patients with leg, shoulder, arm, neck, upper back, head, face, or mouth pain. Everyone filled out several surveys. Data was collected on pain levels, medication use, and work status. Questions were also asked about depression anxiety, activity levels, and acceptance of pain levels. Analysis of the data showed three basic subgroups of behavior. These included avoidance , pacing , and confronting . Avoidance refers to the fact that the patient doesn't do anything that might make the pain worse. Pacing means the patient uses lots of rest breaks in between activities. And confronting was described as not pushing to get things done despi...
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