Neck pain arises if any mechanical or pathological damage happens to the neck or surrounding structures of the neck. The neck is a complex structure consisting of bones, joints, nerves, muscles, tendons, and ligaments. The main job of the neck is to hold up the weight of the head. In addition to this, the neck has to form a conduit for the spinal cord, carry blood vessels to and from the brain, and it also contains passageways for air and food.
The main physical structures in the neck are the seven small interlocking bones called cervical vertebrae, numbered C1 through to C7. Each vertebra is connected to the next with facet joints. Between the two vertebrae, there are rubbery cushions called intervertebral discs that are made mostly of cartilage and act as shock-absorbers.
Because of its mobility, the neck is less stable than other parts of the body. The most common cause of neck pain comes from its soft tissues. The muscles, tendons, and ligaments are more prone to injuries or sudden or chronic strain. Neck problems can often present themselves as simple muscle stiffness or pain. Most often, this signal indicates an underlying concern that requires corrective measures.
Types of Neck Pain
Symptoms of Neck Pain
Neck Pain Treatments