Military Neck: What Can Chiropractic Care Do?

Chiropractic care can help military neck by returning the neck to its normal curved shape. Military neck is the generic name given to a condition where the cervical spine becomes straight, instead of having its natural C-shaped curve. This condition does not only affect people who served in the army. The name was given due to the sufferer’s appearance of standing at attention. The posture of their head and neck is not normal and can lead to severe complications. However, chiropractic for military neck can reverse this problem and help patients resume a healthy and pain-free life.

In this article, we will explain why you must not ignore the symptoms of military neck and the reasons why a chiropractor is a specialist you can trust with your health and well-being.

Why Is the Cervical Spine Supposed to Be Curved?

When you look at yourself in the mirror, your neck appears to be straight. However, any model of the human skeleton will show you that the upper part of the spine, which passes through the neck, has a C-shaped curve pointing inwards.

The curvature of the cervical spine is formed in the womb. As the baby starts growing, this curve allows them to keep their head up (it is known that babies are born with oversized heads compared to the rest of their body). The same curve allows our neck, shoulder, and back muscles to strengthen as our body grows.

Finally, the curve of the cervical spine allows the wide range of movements our head and neck are capable of.

Causes and Symptoms of Military Neck

Military Neck: What Can Chiropractic Care Do?

Our chiropractors have encountered many cases of military neck, which allows them to conclude that the most frequent causes of this condition are:

  • Physical trauma in a car accident or after falling from a height
  • Sports injuries
  • Poor posture while working on the computer
  • Sleeping on the stomach.

Pain is the first symptom of military neck, followed by an unnatural position of the head, slightly bent forward. However, the straight neck condition can also lead to more severe complications, such as:

  • Inability to lift loads
  • Trouble breathing and swallowing
  • Spinal cord compression
  • Back and neck muscle spasms
  • Blurred vision

In some of the most severe cases, patients who delay seeking help for this condition develop an unnatural curve in the thoracic spine, which sometimes puts pressure on the lungs. This is why you should opt for chiropractic for military neck as soon as you notice that something is wrong.

How Is Military Neck Diagnosed?

There are a few ways your doctor can check to determine if you have military neck. Generally, your healthcare provider will start by assessing your posture, balance, and range of motion. You can also expect an X-ray or a computed tomography (CT) scan to confirm that your diagnosis is accurate.

Once you’ve been diagnosed, your chiropractor can begin creating a treatment plan to address your condition and help you reach the ideal posture and neck position.

The Main Reasons to Choose Chiropractic for Military Neck

This condition of the neck can be successfully treated without resorting to medication or surgery if you go to a chiropractor as soon as you identify the first symptoms of military neck. A chiropractor will:

Encourage the Cervical Spine to Return to Its Natural Position

The first aim of chiropractic for military neck is to help the spine regain its natural C-shaped curve. The chiropractor will apply a series of manipulations over several treatment sessions. The manipulations are extremely precise, safe, and will not cause you any pain and discomfort.

These are therapeutic procedures acquired over years of formal training and experience. You should not attempt to perform them on yourself at home or ask a friend to do it for you. Only a licensed chiropractor should adjust your neck. Otherwise, you may cause severe injuries to your spine.

Identify and Correct Habits that Led to Your Condition

As part of the therapeutic plan, the chiropractor will try to understand what caused the military neck if no physical trauma is involved. The chiropractor will assess:

  • Your posture while sitting and standing
  • The placement of your office chair and desk (by asking you to provide photos)
  • Your usual position when sleeping.

Based on the information gathered from this evaluation, chiropractic for military neck will also involve a change in your habits. The chiropractor will recommend you to use an ergonomic office desk, maintain a correct posture while walking and sitting down, and stop sleeping on your stomach.

It is an effort on your part to correct these habits, but it is worthwhile.

Physiotherapy Could Also Benefit Military Neck

Beyond chiropractic treatments, your doctor may also recommend you try certain physical therapy services. Some of the types of physiotherapy treatments that can help patients with neck injuries include:

  • Corrective care: Addresses pain after a chiropractic adjustment. This type of treatment allows your chiropractor to closely monitor your condition and ensure you are healing properly.
  • Rehabilitative therapy: Helps improve strength and range of motion after an injury. You may be asked to use specialized chiropractic equipment to perform exercises. Your doctor may even teach you exercises you can perform at home to continue rehabilitation.
  • Massage therapy: Relieves muscle tension, spasms, and any injury-related pain. It can also help improve stiffness and joint dysfunction. Many patients find this form of treatment relaxing, though some report feeling sore as muscles are manipulated.
  • Electrical muscle stimulation (E-STIM): Stimulates specific muscles and muscle groups using a small electric device. E-STIM helps with muscle healing and repair.
  • Stretching and strength training: Practicing stretches and exercises to improve flexibility and strength. Your doctor may continue to recommend new exercises as your strength improves.
  • Ultrasound therapy: Sends sound waves into muscle tissue to improve blood flow and heal damaged tissues. This type of therapy is often used to treat neck injuries like military neck.

Working with a physical therapist and a chiropractor can help you feel better and treat your injury without the need for medications or invasive procedures.

What to Expect During Your Chiropractic Appointment for Military Neck

When you visit a chiropractor to treat your neck injury, you can expect:

  • A review of your medical history. Your chiropractor may ask about any medications you take, surgeries you’ve had, and other treatments you’ve pursued for military neck.
  • A discussion about your condition and symptoms. The chiropractor or physiotherapist you visit might ask about when your symptoms began. It may help to provide pictures of how your military neck condition is progressing.
  • A physical exam. Before you can start treatment, your chiropractor will need to fully assess your physical condition. This helps them determine what treatments might work best for you.
  • To build your treatment plan. Your chiropractor and physical therapist may work together to develop a plan to treat your military neck. Usually, these doctors create a customized treatment plan, taking your symptoms, age, and other factors into account. They’ll explain how each exercise they recommend will benefit you.

Preparing for Your Chiropractic Treatment

It’s normal to feel nervous before visiting a new doctor. However, your chiropractor and their team will do everything they can to make you feel as comfortable as possible. They will make sure you understand your treatment plan and how frequently you’ll need to come in for visits. You can also ask them any questions you have and adjust your therapy plan at any time.

Some ways to prepare for your appointment include:

  • Stay hydrated and eat a light meal or snack. This will help you feel ready to practice any exercises or chiropractic techniques.
  • Wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothing. Many patients decide to wear the same types of clothes they would work out in, as chiropractic appointments usually require you to move around or lie on a table.
  • Be prepared to ask questions. If you want to know more about your condition or treatment plan, it might help to write down any questions you have so you can ask your doctor for more details.
  • Understand that you might experience some side effects. It is normal to feel sore and tired after a chiropractic appointment. However, if your side effects do not subside after a few days, you might want to discuss them with your chiropractor.

Choose Specific Care Chiropractic for Treating Military Neck

At Specific Care Chiropractic, we believe in healing the entire person and focusing on improving well-being and quality of life for all our patients. We specialize in chiropractic for military neck and many other injuries and conditions of the neck.

Get in touch with one of our doctors and schedule your initial appointment in any of our clinics located in:

  • Fort Myers, FL
  • Cape Coral, FL
  • Coral Springs, FL
  • Leigh Acres, FL.