Facet Sprain

Each bone in the neck articulates with the one below and above via two joints known as facet joints. These are small joints that can easily be over stretched or compressed with sudden or sharp movements of the head. The pain can present as an immediate pain, a deep dull ache or a sudden locking/inability to move the neck. Pain can radiate around the site of injury down into the shoulders or up into the head.


As you age it is perfectly normal for your neck to show signs of wear and tear, discs loose water and bones get closer together as a result. This can cause the nerves to get easily irritated as they leave the spinal cord, causing local neck pain and radiation of pain/pins and needles down the arm.

Herniated/Slipped Disc

As in the back the bones in the neck are supported above and below by a disc. These discs can be subject to injury and trauma and can herniate or prolapse. When this happens disc material can bulge out, this and the subsequent inflammation can easily irritate the sensitive nerves leaving the neck travelling down the arms. (The term slipped disc is not accurate, as the majority of the disc material is held in place and cannot actually ‘slip’). You often get a sharp aching pain at the site of injury but as in the back, pain and symptoms such as pins & needles or numbness travelling along the path of the nerve. This could be down the shoulder, arm and into the fingers.

Whiplash Associated Disorder (WAD)

Whiplash is often very severe and debilitating but little evidence on injury shows up on scans and X-rays. This can be very frustrating for patients and family members having to deal with the injury. The injury is caused by an over stretching of the joints, ligaments and muscles in the neck and surrounding structures, often as a result of a vehicle accident but can be caused by falls, sports trauma, horse riding or even a violent fairground ride. This pain often can take hours or days to develop which can be a strange thing to experience, walking away from an accident with no pain, then waking up the following morning in agony. Syptoms of whiplash often include:

  • Neck pain and Stiffness
  • Decreased range of motion
  • Headache and Dizziness
  • Pain in and around the shoulder or further down the back.

Whiplash is successfully treated with Chiropractic care and manual therapies. At Salford City Chiropractic we offer gentle treatment consisting of massage and gentle mobilisation to help ease the pain. We can also teach you Rehabilitative exercises to restore the range of motion in the neck. Some cases of whiplash can be very severe and will require hospitalisation. If in doubt please give us a call or seek medical advice from your GP

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