Neck pain usually shows up because of aging, postural and mechanical irregularities in people. However, there are some deeper issues like:
- Bone spurs/Osteophyte formation: Sometimes, there is a small growth in the bone at the joint. It puts pressure on the nerve and causes pain.
- Disc degeneration: The discs of the vertebrae help in smooth movement along the spine. When the disc thins out due to wear and tear, there is more friction during movement, causing pain.
- Disc herniation: The gel inside the vertebrae that acts as a shock absorber leaks out of the disc when it becomes brittle and cracks open. This puts pressure on the exposed nerve that causes the pain.
- Poor posture: The most common example of poor posture is leaning forward for a prolonged period of time (head and shoulders bent forward- like working in front of a computer). There is an undue strain on the muscles and ligaments in the neck which results in pain.
- Mental health concerns: Depression and anxiety have been known to cause neck pain.
In the case of asymptomatic chronic neck pain, a pain caused by mechanical and degenerative factors is called cervical spondylosis. It is also referred to as cervical osteoarthritis or neck arthritis.