Arthritis in the neck - arthritis, which is a term used synonymously with degeneration, wear and tear, or deterioration, is the breakdown of a region. It starts to create jagged edges in the bones making nerve pressure come about easier. There are also arthritic conditions that present with inflammation as well. An example would be rheumatoid arthritis.
When degenerative changes occue in the bones of the cervical spine and also in the disc spaces, it is often referred to as Cervcial spondylosis. Another is cervical degeneration. Arthritis of the neck can go by a few a different terms.
To understand how Arthritis shows up on an x-ray, its first important to see to what a normal neck looks like on an x-ray without arthritis.
How does degeneration show up in the cervical spine? Through bone spurs and changes in the bones and the discs. When we start to have too much movement in the cervical spine (something that can happen with age), the body attemps to stabilize it self- one of ways it does this is through the creation of bone spurs. Bone spurs serve to attempt to increase the surface area of hypermobile vertebral joints and to stabilize that. But this does not happen successfully and it doesn't increase the join't surface area. Instead the bone spurs can become a source of pain. They can put pressure on the spinal nerves, leading to pain in the body and the muscles. Other things that can happen is that the disc space between bones can begin to decrease. This disc space is very important as it acts as a shock absorber for the activites of our daily living.
Moist Heat Therapy
Moist heat therapy helps to relax the muscles and feels great. It also helps the mobility of the joints.
Work on the Muscles
A Tens unit can help with muscle spasms and soreness associated with arthritis.
Gentle Neck Traction
Neck Traction can help someone with artertis as it helps to open up spaces between vertebra and joint spaces.
Sleep with A Contoured Neck Pillow
Support the proper curvature of your cervical spine. You can do this by using a contoured cervical pillow to sleep on. At first this might be difficult. But you will find more pain relief from arthritis if you align your cervical spine properly while sleeping.