The cervical disks are located between the vertebrae in the spine. When a cervical disk displaces backwards, or backwards and to one side, it can cause irritation to nearby nerves and result in pain, numbness and weakness in the neck and arms. This condition is most commonly caused by poor posture or degenerative changes.
Treating Neck Pain
Neuromuscular re-education and strengthening of the middle and lower trapezius muscles (postural muscles located across your upper back) are important in treating patients with neck pain to prevent increased use of the upper trapezius (muscles that shrug your shoulders), which can add compression to the spine. Manual and verbal cues from the therapist can help you focus on the correct muscles. Stretching tight chest muscles will help keep your spine aligned and therefore decrease pull on neck muscles. Manual therapy, including active release techniques, joint mobilizations and manual traction, help restore lost motion and decrease muscle spasms, which are secondary effects of neck pain.