We have got to tell you about an awesome young woman who came into our office with sudden onset neck pain. After taking the summer off, she had resumed her intense swimming training, including an advanced weight lifting class. Believing her body to be at the same level she had been before the time away, she loaded her body and maxed out on the bench press. You can probably guess what happened... she woke up the next morning with an extremely sore neck and a few hours later, it seized up. This would definitely happen to most of us in this kind of situation.
So what can we learn from this and what did she do?
Our bodies react to stressors. In her case, it was the lack of exercise and then launching into heavy lifting. Combine that with hunching over for several hours from the pain, and her body's stress management system reacted in a big way.
She came in to the office that afternoon and Dr. Nielson evaluated her. He found she was a good candidate for a conservative approach and adjusted her. She returned the next day for electrical stimulation to her neck and a light adjustment, helping her specifically with her irritated muscles and temporary hunched posture. After another few adjustments paired with electrical stimulation, her muscle's protective spasms, extreme inflammation and tenderness had significantly calmed down and her range of motion was returning to normal. Her treatment extended over 5 days time and after the weekend, she returned yesterday with mild tenderness and mild tension and was able to tolerate a full adjustment. After a visit or two more, she should be in great shape!
Research has shown that chiropractic care cuts the natural healing time down by 50% with certain conditions. While pain would've likely calmed down for our patient naturally within 2-3 weeks, stiff joints don't magically release on their own, causing residual neck stiffness. Both the stiffness and pain took significantly less time to resolve with the treatment she received here. It was a great choice to come see us and she is returning to her normal activities.
We are so happy for her and look forward to watching her swim at her best!