When you wake up with your throat stiff, you have to go back with your whole body to be able to follow what’s happening around you, not moving too much your head. This happens when you suffer from cervical stiffness, a condition that is characterized by pain, inflammation and discomfort in the neck.
Most of the time, cervical stiffness occurs when you take an unsuitable position during sleep. Then, the muscles in that area are tense, and the mobility of the neck is impaired. Then there are difficulties in head turning, but also strong pains.
To avoid such a medical problem, it is important to know the exact causes of these conditions, what symptoms and what complications may occur.
What causes the appearance of cervical stiffness?
Cervical stiffness may occur when there are conditions in the neck or adjacent areas: shoulders, jaw, head or arms. Neck stretching of the neck or shoulders can easily occur when you are sleeping in an inappropriate position or working from an uncomfortable posture.
However, cervical rigidity can also caused by certain diseases affecting the thyroid gland, trachea and pharynx, spinal cord or cervical spine. If you practice certain sports, you should also pay attention to the shoulder lift muscle, which can easily be affected when different forces act on it.
Cervical rigidity can also occur due to stress, excessive tension, or prolonged sitting in the office in an incorrect position.
There are a number of diseases that can cause cervical rigidity, such as: myocardial infarction, spinal cord cancer and blood cancer, cerebral aneurysms, cervical vertebral infections, meningitis, influenza, osteomyelitis or migraines.
Pain in the neck muscles may also occur due to osteomuscular causes. For example, when you practice repeated head movements from one side to the other, the muscles can stretch and can affect neck mobility.
Body immobilization, injuries, traumas or fractures of the cervical spine are also among the causes of cervical rigidity.
Cervical rigidity – What are the symptoms?
If you suffer from cervical stiffness, you will experience certain symptoms such as headaches, irritability, shoulder and arm pain, sleep disturbances and headache.
If cervical pain caused by high pressure on the nerves, the symptoms include numbness, tingling and weakness in the shoulder, shoulders and other parts of the body.
However, cervical stiffness may be a sign of a more serious condition, such as arthritis or spinal cervical stenosis, but it can also indicate serious problems such as heart attack, meningitis or cervical fracture.
Cervical rigidity – What complications can occur?
If you suffer from cervical stiffness, you should pay attention to the complications that may occur and consult a doctor.
If it is a more serious condition, breathing difficulties or swallowing, jaw pain, nausea and vomiting, partial paralysis, eczema, irritation, numbness, chest pressure, and flu-like symptoms may occur: fever, sore throat, headache and cough.
How can cervical stiffness be treated?
If you have suffered muscle damage that has caused cervical rigidity, you can try certain stretching exercises for your neck muscles. They can fight pain and stiffness and force your neck muscles. However, such exercises should performed with care, in order not to worsen the condition of the injuries.
Massage and acupuncture can also be effective treatment methods for cervical pain, because it relaxes the muscles and speeds up the healing process.
You can also apply cold compressions to relieve neck pain or make hot baths to improve the circulatory system.
Do not forget to relax and practice breathing and meditation exercises because they can combat the cervical pains that arise from stress.
Cervical stiffness is a common condition that occurs in most people, for various reasons, such as sleeping in awkward postures or various head and shoulder problems. It may be accompanied by various complications, which may indicate more serious health problems, and in such situations it is advisable to consult a doctor.