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Neck pain & headaches

Feb 26th, 2019

Hey!

 

Approx two weeks ago, I felt my neck is getting stiffer and stiffer daily, and become sensitive to movement sideways. I kept doing training (BJJ) with that for 1-2 days, but I gave up as it was too sensitive to strains. Since then it’s not becoming better, despite self-massage, deep-heat gels, heatpack.

 

The pain is on the left side, both front above the clavicle, and the opposite side on my back. If I push with a finger I can feel that muscle/tendon/whatever that hurts.

 

Lately, the pain radiates to my head/ear too (mostly left), I feel warmth in the head (no fever at all), I feel constant fatigue even after sleeping 8-9 hours, difficulty with concentration, and I feel down in general.

 

Any guess? Are these things related? What can I do?

 

Thanks in advance,

Daniel

The Guru Responded:

Hi Daniel

 

Yes – I think they’re all related, and here’s why.

 

When patients have a stiff neck it of utmost importance to know what’s stiff and why. For example having a stiff knee it’s pretty obvious that’s a joint issue and if you’ve got a stiff thigh is also very likely to be an issue with your quads/muscle.

 

A neck is different. Are you feeling stiff joints or stiff muscles? They’ll feel pretty similar in how to make your pain worse and where you feel it, as muscles cross over joints.

 

What you’ve actually got is stiff muscles protecting joint(s) which have been overstretched. Self massage, stretching, heat won’t change anything as you’ve still the issue with overstretched joints.

 

To take the excessive load off of the overstretched joint(s) you need to take more load elsewhere – through your thoracic spine.

 

You need to get this bit moving and then stabilise, not stretch, the muscle around your neck.

 

It’s why you’re feeling pain elsewhere (referred and joint overload) and feeling so tired – you’re having to overwork your muscles as they need to protect your neck.

 

You need to get on with some of there great exercises – don’t expect overnight change but give it a week or so doing this well a couple or three times a day.

 

And of course

 

The more thoracic mobility you get the better you’ll feel…

 

The Guru

 

Daniel wants to follow-up

I’m aware that diagnosing potential customers via email is not your top priority, but this neck stiffness I have written you about (possibly due to overstretched joints, as you suggested) has not got any better in the past 3 weeks either, despite doing all the exercises you recommended to mobilize my thoracic spine and reduce the load. Overall, I’ve been struggling with this (stiff neck, pain on the left  side front and back, especially in the morning, fatigue and headache on back/left of head) for over 6 weeks now.

 

Just asking if this is normal for this to take this long, without noticeable improvement? Any further steps to improve this you recommend? When it comes to specialists to visit, I’m not even sure which one should I pick (chiropractor, osteopath, physio, massage, or just a simple yoga class).

 

Thank you very much for your help!

 

The Guru replies…

Ah!

 

Not good and not bad…

 

We need to establish why you’re not getting better, even over email!

 

The body is great at getting it self better – if you cut yourself the bleeding will stop, a scab will form and give it a few weeks your skin will be getting back to normal. You can’t speed this reaction up – but if you pick the scab, over stretch the skin or  don’t allow it to heal, it will take much longer.

 

You’ve slowed the process down by not allowing your tissue to heal….similarities can be seen with your neck. You need to be given the ability to move better with quality not just more.

 

So you need to do either, or.

 

Either JUST do the thoracic mobility work and see how you feel or JUST do the muscle control work around your neck and shoulders BUT not both.

 

Who should you see? Doesn’t really make a difference as it’s their clinical reasoning as to why you’ve got a neck issue rather than what needs poking or pushing on. Feeling better certainly isn’t getting better.

 

The Guru

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