Cervical spondylitis is a common age-related condition that affects the joints and discs in the cervical spine in your neck. healthline The protective bones and cartilage in your neck are subject to wear and tear that can lead to cervical spondylosis. Possible causes of the condition include::
This excessive bone growth is the result of the body trying to grow extra bone to make the spine stronger. However, the extra bone can put pressure on sensitive areas of the spine, such as the spinal cord and nerves, causing pain..
dried spinal discs
The bones of your spine have discs between them, which are thick, cushion-like pads that absorb the shock of lifting, rolling and other activities. The gel-like material inside these discs can dry out over time. This causes your bones to rub against each other more, which can be painful.
Spinal discs can cause fissures, allowing internal cushioning material to leak. This material can put pressure on the spinal cord and nerves, leading to symptoms such as arm numbness as well as pain that radiates down the arm.
If you have an injury to your neck, it can speed up the aging process.
The tough cords that hold the bones in the spine together so that they can become stiffer over time.
Risk factors for the condition
The biggest risk factor for cervical spondylosis is old age, and cervical spondylosis often develops as a result of changes in your neck joints as you age.
Factors other than aging can increase the risk of cervical spondylosis. These include:
Work-related activities that put extra stress on your neck from lifting heavy objects
Keeping your neck in an uncomfortable position for long periods of time or repeating the same neck movements throughout the day.
Genetic factors (family history of cervical spondylosis).
Weight gain and inactivity.
Symptoms of cervical spondylosis
Most people with cervical spondylosis do not have significant symptoms. If symptoms do occur, they can range from mild to severe and may develop gradually or occur suddenly.
One of the common symptoms is pain around the scapula. Some complain of pain in the arm and in the fingers. The pain may increase when sitting or standing, with sneezing and coughing.
Other common signs include:
Neck stiffness that gets worse.
Headache that mostly occurs in the back of the head.
Tingling or numbness that mainly affects the shoulders and arms, although it can also occur in the legs.
Your doctor may prescribe some medications if over-the-counter medications don’t work. These include:
Muscle relaxants to treat muscle spasms.
Narcotic pain relievers.
Anti-epileptic medicines to relieve pain caused by nerve damage.
If your condition is severe and doesn’t respond to other forms of treatment, you may need surgery. This can include removing bone spurs, portions of neck bones, or herniated discs to give your spinal cord and nerves more space..