Signs of a herniated cervical disc can vary from person to person, but there are some common signs that many people with this issue experience. A physical therapist can help you identify these signs.
A cervical herniated disc occurs when a spinal disc in the neck is damaged. This damage allows the inner disc material to poke out, and the material can then rub against nerves in the neck. However, the signs of a cervical herniated disc can be mistaken for other neck issues, and that’s why you should consider seeking help from a physical therapist. These specialists can confirm that you have a herniated cervical disc, and they can also help you find top-notch treatment options for this neck condition.
Five signs of a cervical herniated disc
Your physical therapist will perform a comprehensive physical exam to determine the cause of your symptoms. They can then use their extensive knowledge of human musculoskeletal disorders to pinpoint your issue.
Some of the signs that can signal you have a herniated disc are:
- Neck pain — The pain often occurs in the back or side of your neck. It can range from an aching feeling to a burning or shocking sensation.
- Neck stiffness — The pain and inflammation caused by a cervical herniated disc can make it harder to move your neck normally.
- Radiating pain — Herniated cervical discs often irritate nearby neck nerves. When this happens, you could have pain that radiates into your shoulders, arms and hands.
- Numbness or weakness — Nerve irritation caused by this condition can also lead to numbness in the areas served by the affected nerves. It can also lead to weakness in arm and shoulder muscles.
- Symptoms that worsen when the head is moved in certain ways — Often, moving your head can cause herniated cervical disc symptoms to worsen. Twisting or tilting the head forward are the most common movements that lead to increased symptoms.
How can your physical therapist treat a herniated cervical disc?
If your therapist finds signs of a herniated cervical disc, they can take steps to treat your condition. The biggest of these steps will be building you a unique therapy plan. Such a plan often contains many therapy techniques, which may include:
- Myofascial release therapy intended to break up knots in neck and shoulder soft tissue.
- Therapeutic exercises that can stretch and strengthen your neck muscles.
- Ergonomic recommendations designed to improve your posture and prevent future neck issues.
Armor PT is ready to help you treat your neck condition
Are you experiencing the above signs of a herniated cervical disc? You can find help for your condition from our Armor Physical Therapy team. We offer free screenings that can confirm that you have a herniated disc in your neck. Additionally, our physical therapists excel at creating individualized therapy plans intended to:
- Reduce pain.
- Improve neck mobility.
- Increase your ability to do normal daily activities.
- Decrease your risk of future neck problems.
Contact us today for more information about our treatment options for neck problems or to schedule an initial appointment.