When a person experiences pain or some other symptoms connected to the ligaments of the vertebrae, then he or she is most likely suffering from neck sprain.
The neck actually houses the cervical spine and all of its ligaments. Unlike some of the other parts of the spinal column, the cervical spine has less muscles and ligaments that surround it. Even thought the number of these muscles and ligaments is not large they have some other good characteristics like an extensive range of motion. This part of the spinal column is more prone to injuries like neck sprain for instance because it is not surrounded with a sufficient number of muscles and ligaments. The actual definition of neck sprain is the stretching or even tearing of the ligaments that are attached to the cervical spine. However, a neck sprain is not just that. For instance, a person can damage some other structure in that area like the nerves, joint capsules, bursae, cartilage or blood vessels and it would still be called a neck sprain. A lot of people are not aware that there is a difference between neck sprain and neck strain and there is. Experts say that damage to the tissue that moves like muscles and tendons is called a sprain while damage to the inert structures such as ligaments and joints is called a strain.
Sprained neck causes and symptoms
A sudden movement can lead to a neck sprain. In such cases the ligaments are stretched far beyond the limit of their movement. When that happens these ligaments may stretch and even tear. One of the main causes of neck sprain is a motorbike accident. In these accidents people usually fall really hard or make some forceful movement which leads to a neck sprain. A person will know that he or she had sprained the neck if he or she experiences pain in the back of the neck which only gets more severe when a person moves. One of the symptoms is pain in the upper shoulder. Some of the other symptoms include numbness and tingling in the hands, headache, neck stiffness, weakness and irritability.
Sprained neck treatment
There are various degrees of neck sprain pain. The symptoms may be mild in which case there is no need for a medical attention and severe when there is need for the medical care. If the pain is mild a person can apply ice packs and use some medications. If the symptoms do not go away a person should go to the hospital. The doctor will examine the neck thoroughly and may even order an X-ray. In some cases the patient mat be required to wear a collar around the neck. Rest is a very important part of the recovery process. Sometimes, the patient is advised to perform certain neck exercises.