AgeWell: Neck Pain and Stress

IS MY NECK PAIN CAUSED BY STRESS?

Is your neck always stiff and sore? Are you struggling with high levels of stress? Excessive stress levels can causemuscles to become tense and tighten throughout your neck, shoulders, and back. As stress and muscle tension increase, you may have what is known as a tension headache.

I N S I D E IS MY NECK PAIN CAUSED BY STRESS? WORKING ON NECK PAIN TO RELIEVE HEADACHES EXERCISE ESSENTIALS

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IS MY NECK PAIN CAUSED BY STRESS?

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•Wear andTear on the Joints - Overmanyyears the neck area of the spine can produce gaps, bone spurs, and other abnormalities that can cause pain. Tissues in the spine can also become brittle and less elastic, contributing to painful neck conditions. • Injuries - Neck injuries, such aswhiplash, mayalso cause neck pain. When whiplash occurs, there is usually injury to the muscles and the connecting tissues. This can often limit mobility and increase tension in the neck. How Physical Therapy Can Help Neck pain, including tension headaches, can be reduced and even eliminated with physical therapy. A physical therapist can target the source of your pain and provide awide range of treatment options.Therapists can provide different exercises that can relax your neck muscles and increase flexibility. They can teach you exercises to do at home to keep your neck loose, limber, and pain-free. Since this type of pain is often caused by certain types of activity, changing your routine can also limit the stress to your neck. Aphysical therapist can help you learn how to holdyourhead in differentways thatwon’t lead to chronic pain. Contact our office to find out how physical therapy can ease your neck pain.

A tension headache is stress-related neck pain that often starts near the base of the shoulders and moves upward. According to theMayo Clinic, there are several symptoms related to this condition. • Muscle spasms and increased tightness • Difficulty moving your head • Increased pain when holding your head in specific positions • Headaches What Causes this Condition? Even though stress is often the root cause of neck pain, there are other factors that canmake itworse. According to the U.S. National LibraryofMedicine, the following can contribute to neck pain. • OverusedMuscles -This is due to holding the head in the same position for long periods of time. This could include holding your head in a particular position while working at the computer, leaning over a desk, or engaging in any number of activities.

Get Moving Today with AgeWell Physical Therapy! • Call 516.488.8808 to talk with your physical therapist!

W O R K I N G O N N E C K PA I N T O R E L I E V E H E A D A C H E S

The neck can be a hidden and debilitating source of headaches. Very often neck pain and headaches go hand-in-hand, leading to a miserable time coping with everyday activities. According to the National Institute of Health Statistics neck pain and headaches are the secondmost common form of pain experienced byAmericans,with 59% reporting it affected their enjoyment of life. Some headaches are often grouped under the term “cervicogenic headache” meaning that the primary source is from the neck. There are well mapped out patterns of headaches that come from the different parts of the neck, shoulder and upper back areas. The discs between your bones (vertebrae) and joints in the upperneck often contribute to headaches. Even headaches located in the forehead or behind the eyes are often referred pains stemming from problem areas in the neck and base of the skull. The joints connecting the top three vertebral levels of the neck handle almost 50% of the total motion of the entire neck. This means they absorb a lot of repetitive strain. These joints bear the main load of the weight of the head (about that of a bowling ball).With fatigue, poorposture, injuries, disc problems,

arthritis, muscular stress and even prior surgeries, the wear and tear on this critical region of your body can prove too much, resulting in pain. It is also possible that you may develop a narrowing of the spinal canal itself. Since the spinal cord runs through the spine, a narrowing of the canal or where the nerves exit, can lead to a condition called spinal stenosis. There is much that can be done to treat neck pain and headaches. Our expert physical therapists have years of experience helping people with neck pain and headaches. Byfinding the root cause ofyourneck pain and headaches we can relieve your pain quickly, reduce the need formedication and getyou back to the activitiesyou enjoy. Discover how our team of specialists at AgeWell Physical Therapycan eliminateyourneck pain and headaches allowing you to live a happy, active and pain-free life. Call today for more details! Call AgeWell Physical Therapy at 516.488.8808 to schedule an appointment and help relieve your neck pain and headaches. admission into the Doctor of Physical Therapy Program at The NewYork Institute of Technology, where she will begin her coursework in the summer of 2020. Laura most enjoys the “family” atmosphere at AgeWell/ LiveWell and that she is exposed to and forms connections with real patients working towards improving their quality of life. Laura states: “I love how friendly, caring and kind everyone is. It’s really great to work with people who care so deeply for their patients.” Laura has an extremely busy schedule, but when she has some free time she most enjoys being outdoors and spending time with family skiing, hiking and kayaking at the family’s country home in NewHampshire. AgeWell / LiveWell recognizes the value Laura brings to the office and feels lucky to have staff like Laura as part of their therapy team.

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S TA F F SPOT L I GH T

AgeWell / Livewell would like to highlight a very important member of the therapy team. Laura Streiber from Floral Park is a therapy tech and administrative assistant. Her position exposes her to the many functions of an outpatient therapy office. Laura is also a full time undergraduate student studying Exercise Science at Adephi University. Laura has earned early

WHAT OUR PAT I ENT S AR E SAY I NG

RECE I VE THERAPY I N YOUR HOME ! AgeWell PT and LiveWell OT offer in-home physical therapy and occupational therapy services. If you have difficulty traveling or leaving your home, these services are for you! These services are also covered by Medicare. I N - OF F I CE SPECIAL TEST ING SERV I CES AgeWell PT offers in-house electrodiagnostic testing and musculoskeletal diagnostic ultrasound testing for all of our patients. We hope our therapy patients take advantage of these tests to improve their rate of recovery and therapy outcome.

LydiaR fromQueensenjoysbeingactiveand independent,unfortunately shehada fall inMayof2018and fracturedher left femur.Shedecided to come to AgeWell Physical Therapy after she had a bad experience at another PT provider closer to her home and she is so happy she did! Lydia describes the staff and her therapist at AgeWell as kind, knowledgeable and compassionate. She feels the surgery to repair her femur was important to her recovery, but the therapy is the most important part in ensuring the best outcome. Lydiastates“Ittakesaspecialkindofpersonwho isknowledgeableand compassionate to be an effective therapist” and she reminds us that the road to recovery takes hard work and know-how. Since beginning her therapy at AgeWell, Lydia has made outstanding progress. On her first day she had pain and a limited ability to walk with a walker and now she is pain-free and walking independently. Lydia would like to recommend AgeWell / LiveWell to anyone in need of Physical or Occupational Therapy and is quick to point out that it is the best therapy office around and there is no place like it!” - Lydia R.

T URK E Y ME AT BA L L S

INGREDIENTS • 1 lb ground turkey • 1 large egg, beaten • 1/4 cup shaved parmesan

• 1 tsp salt • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper • 1 (24 oz) jar red pasta sauce • 1/2 lb whole grain spaghetti

• 1 tsp garlic powder • 1 tsp onion powder • 1 tsp basil

INSTRUCTIONS Preheat broiler on high for 5 minutes. Combine all meatball ingredients in large bowl. Use your hands to mix the ingredients. Use a 1.5 tablespoon cookie scoop to scoop 18 meatballs onto a rimmed cookie sheet. Broil on top rack for 5 minutes. In a large skillet, bring pasta sauce to a low simmer. Add in cooked meatballs and simmer together for 5-10 minutes or until meatballs are completely cooked through. Serve with your choice of pasta, fresh basil, more parmesan and enjoy!

E X E R C I S E E S S E N T I A L S TRY THIS EXERCISE TO STRENGTHEN NECK MUSCLES

REFER A FR I END!

Get a free gift whenever you refer a friend or family member to Agewell Physical Therapy. It’s our way of saying “Thank You!” for spreading the word!

CERVICAL RETRACTION Stand with your back against a wall. Position a rolled up towel behind your neck. Tuck chin like you are nodding ‘yes’. Draw your chin closer to the back of your throat. Repeat 3 times.

Always consult your physical therapist or physician before starting exercises you are unsure of doing.

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