At the Acupuncture Center of Richmond we see many patients who come to us for neck pain. Neck pain is very common because the neck, compared to many other parts of the body is quite vulnerable. It has the task of holding the heavy human head upright for most of the day. We see neck pain due to trauma, bad posture, due to just a night of sleeping wrong, or chronic neck pain that seems to have no cause at all. Of course there is always some cause, and finding it will help us effectively treat neck pain. Another reason neck pain is so common is because the neck is a place where many people hold their stress (the neck and often the shoulders as well). After many years of holding stress in the neck and shoulders, the blood circulation actually diminishes and the muscles and tissues become undernourished and weak, leading to tiredness, strain and pain. Also, many of us develop bad posture for a number of reasons and this incorrect position of the head will cause the neck muscles to have to work harder just to keep the head upright. There are many things we can do for neck pain. There are many strong and effective acupuncture points in the neck area which we use, but we also use many points called distal points which are not close to the neck that empirical evidence over hundreds of years tells us are effective for helping neck pain. There are several effective Chinese herbal formulas that are specific for neck pain as well as ointments that we can prescribe that augment the treatment, allowing the healing to continue between treatments. I also will usually prescribe some exercises to do two things: bring the head back into proper alignment, and strengthen the neck muscles.
Monte Jackson, owner Acupuncture Center of Richmond