Neck hernias, especially in persons who work at a desk and use smartphones, have become a serious problem affecting all age groups, even children and young people. Herniated discs occur due to the soft jelly-like part in the center and inside of the cartilage disc between the vertebrae infiltrating through the surrounding layers and entering the area where it shouldn’t be. If the protruding disc material from the middle part of the spinal canal herniates, it can press on the nerves that go to the spinal cord, and if it herniates from the side of the canal, it can be painful or painless.
With hernias coming from the center, the person feels pain; can feel in the shoulders, neck and shoulder blades or back. With hernias close to the side, this can manifest with pain, numbness, tingling, or a feeling of weakness in the patient’s arm. Pain in the neck, neck, shoulder and back pain, restriction of neck movement, muscle spasms, numbness in the arms and hands, numbness, thinning of the arms, decreased muscle strength in the arms and hands may be seen. All these findings affect people’s lives and make life difficult and even unbearable.
What diseases can it be confused with?
Although there is a cervical disc herniation, it can be mistaken for another disease, and patients who do not have a cervical disc herniation may also be diagnosed with a cervical disc herniation. This confusion can cause a waste of time. We come across patients who have a tumor in the neck and are left hanging on incompetent hands for months. There are many causes of neck pain, such as fibromyalgia syndrome, myofascial pain syndrome, shoulder problems, chest outlet syndrome, DISH (diffuse idiopathic skeletal hyperostosis), and it is very important to distinguish which of them is causing this pain.
Who is it most common in?
Neck herniation is commonly seen in people who use cell phones, spend time at the computer, read books, work at a desk, drivers who travel long distances, and people who do not use a neck pillow while sleeping, mainly because they rest their neck for a long time. In addition, neck hernia disorders are mainly caused during long trips during summer vacations. It is caused by sleeping in public transport vehicles (buses, etc.), landing in plane travel (sleeping at the time of contact with the ground), especially during long journeys during summer vacations. Sleeping in public transport vehicles (buses, etc.), landing (falling asleep at the moment of contact with the ground) during airplane travel and staying in the same position for a long time, especially when traveling in a private vehicle for holiday purposes, can be the cause of serious problems.
What are the points of attention against neck pain?
– The best treatment is prevention, the best medicine is exercise. When sleeping, the neck pillow should be chosen orthopedically. To minimize the risk of getting a cervical disc herniation, it is necessary to stay away from the lifestyle that can cause cervical disc herniation in everyday life.
– By not lingering with the smartphone for a long time (this should never be done by bending the neck forward) and getting into the habit of working by taking long breaks without working at the computer reduces the risk on hernia development.
– Being careful while traveling is also an important precaution. When a painful situation happens to us, caring about the situation and getting accurate information about our situation by having ourselves examined by a specialist doctor will give us the opportunity to live a conscious life.
– If you have neck pain, you should definitely determine the cause of the pain through an examination. This can be a tumor, or a small or large hernia. You should not just focus on the pain. Early detection of the underlying problem causing the pain ensures great success in treatment. The person who can best help you with this is probably a doctor of Physiotherapy or Neurosurgery who has a lot of experience and knowledge in this field. Because these friends of ours are experts who can decide which treatment works best for you and which treatment works best for you first.