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What is Wry Neck, and How’s it Treated?

What is Wry Neck, and How’s it Treated?

Also called acute torticollis, wry neck is a painful condition resulting from a tilted or twisted neck. If you find you’re tilting your head to one side to try to get rid of the pain, this is the likely problem.  Fortunately, Gonstead chiropractors have a solution to this challenging and debilitating problem. 

What Are the Symptoms of Wry Neck?

How can you tell if the problems you’re experiencing are due to a wry neck?  The condition has some pretty specific symptoms, including:

·         Neck pain and stiffness

·         One shoulder is higher than the other

·         Tilting or twisting the chin to one side

·         Swollen lymph nodes near or around the neck

·         Swollen neck and/or shoulder muscles

·         Neck muscle spasms

·         Headaches

·         Inflexibility in the neck, making it hard for you to look to either side or behind you

The Different Types of Wry Neck and Their Causes

A twisted neck can happen at any point in life, from birth to death. It can be something you’re born with or something you acquire.  It can go away on its own, but there’s a high chance of relapse.  Based on the cause, which I’ll go over below, the type of wry neck will be different, as will the level and place of your Gonstead spinal adjustment. 

The most common types of a wry neck include:

·         Fixed or acute torticollis is permanent and usually results from problems with bone or muscle structure.

·         Muscular torticollis is a type of fixed torticollis, but the cause isn’t in the structures; it results from scarring or tight muscles on one side. 

·         Temporary torticollis is due to an ear infection, cold, swollen lymph nodes, or injury to the neck and head.

·         Spasmodic torticollis is a rare condition that usually shows up between the ages of 40 and 60.  It’s when the muscles spasm, causing the head to turn or twist painfully to the side. It can also tilt forward or backward, making it even more painful. 

Other Common Culprits of Wry Neck Pain

Many other possible factors are contributing to a painfully tilted or twisted neck, including:

·         Sleeping on your stomach

·         Sleeping in a hot room with a cold breeze on your face and shoulders

·         Sleeping with two or more pillows under your head and neck

·         Genetics—you can inherit the condition

·         It can happen to a baby in utero if the fetus’ head is positioned incorrectly

·         Staring down at your phone for hours at a time

·         Burn injuries

A wry neck can also be secondary to other conditions like:

·         Herniated disc

·         Slipped facets

·         Bacterial or viral infection

How A Gonstead Chiropractor Treats Wry Neck

kinked neck doesn’t always originate from the neck.  A Gonstead chiropractor takes a more specific approach to treating a wry neck. 

·         We’ll start with a thorough history and visual exam, which is me watching you move your neck in different positions. 

·         Next, I’ll palpate (feel) your spinal column to look for and mark abnormalities. 

·         Then, I’ll target the adjustments to those problem areas, usually in the mid-back (thoracic spine). 

·         Once I adjust the problem areas on the spine and neck, I’ll move into your extremities, especially the shoulder. Misalignment here can often make wry neck symptoms worse. 

There’s no telling how many adjustments you’ll need to treat wry neck symptoms.  Every patient is different. Some require just a few; others need many more.  The important thing is that you should start to feel an improvement immediately following the adjustment. If you’re tired of dealing with the wry neck pain and you live near Norwalk, it’s time to make an appointment with Slovin Chiropractic Center. This condition can be treated with the Gonstead technique, so why wait? 


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Healthline – Wry Neck

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