What Is Neck Pain?

Neck pain is classified as pain anywhere from the back of the skull to the top of the shoulders.

What Causes Neck Pain?

Neck pain is often due to strained muscles and/or tiny misalignments in the neck bones (vertebrae). Your child may develop neck pain as a result of a fall, poor posture ,  sleeping in an awkward position, carrying a backpack on one shoulder,  sitting for too long at the computer or playing sport or a musical instrument.

A less common cause of neck pain is swollen glands reacting to a viral or other infection.

What Are The Signs/ Symptoms?

  • Your child complains of a sore neck
  • Limited movement of the neck (stiffness)
  • A head tilt
  • Pain on touching your child’s neck
  • Pain on brushing your child’s hair.
  • Neck pain associated with fever may indicate an infection.

How long will it last?

It depends on the cause of the problem. Neck pain caused by musculoskeletal problems can last a week to years.

What Can Be Done To Help My Child’s Neck Pain?

  • Chiropractic Care: Chiropractors are specifically trained to identify and correct musculoskeletal problems. Often  neck pain is due to a combination of muscle spasm and spinal misalignments. Chiropractors correct the neck pain through massage and spinal corrections known as adjustments.
  • Heat (wheat bag) for 20 minutes for muscle tightness
  • Ice (10 min) for inflammation of spinal joints
  • Medication- panadol or neurofen. Best to consult a pharmacist or GP before administering any medication.  

A study in 2012 found chiropractic to be the most effective treatment for neck pain, compared to physiotherapy or medication (1).  

(1). Bronfort et al. (2012), Annals of Internal Medicine