A STEP BY STEP GUIDE TO UNDERSTAND CERVICAL LORDOSIS: GET THE RIGHT ADVICE HERE
Cervical Lordosis – The backbone or the spine extends from the neck to the lower back where the tail bone ends. In medical terms, an abnormal inward or concave curvature of the spine in the neck is known as Cervical lordosis. But the word ‘lordosis’ is also used to refer to the normal curvature of the neck i.e cervical lordosis and lumbar lordosis when referring to the lumbar region specifically. Therefore a loss of cervical lordosis would mean a loss in the natural curvature of the spine extending into the neck.
The abnormal curvature is not always necessarily inward. The cervical region can have an outward curvature or a straightened one as well.
CAUSES OF LOSS OF CERVICAL LORDOSIS
There can be numerous reasons for developing abnormalities in the cervical curvature. The most probable reasons for loss of cervical lordosis may be:
- Due to repetitive injuries or accidents damaging the neck vertebrae
- Due to incorrect standing and posture
- Due to activities that involve lifting heavy weights frequently
- Due to incurring injuries during birth
- Due to medical conditions like Spondylolisthesis or sliding of the lower vertebrae, Kyphosis, Scoliosis
- Osteoporosis Weakening of bone tissue and disc herniation or slip discitis
SYMPTOMS OF LOSS OF CERVICAL LORDOSIS
It is a very tricky task to identify symptoms of loss of cervical lordosis because the damage is not localized. It can spread down, damaging the whole length of the spine. Therefore, the signs and symptoms indicating loss of cervical lordosis are unique to each suffering from it. A few of the alarming symptoms are:
- Aches in the back or neck
- Sciatica or radiating pain in the limbs and feet
- Numbness or tingling sensation
- Muscle tension
- Visible arch in the neck or a permanent hunch
- Decrease in the range of motion
- Tightened muscles in the neck, shoulders, and the back
- Compression of localized nerves
- Sudden panic attacks and emotional outbursts
- Inability to hold the head up for too long
- Physical weakness
- Loss of bladder control
There might be cases where there are no visible or active symptoms. Ignoring loss of cervical lordosis can make the person more susceptible to incurring injuries due to undue slips and falls. Therefore, the individual should start consulting a doctor as soon as he notices a change in his neck angle. In most cases, it straightens up. The condition is popularly referred to as ‘military neck’ and must be taken care of as soon as possible.
TREATMENT AND DIAGNOSIS OF LOSS OF CERVICAL LORDOSIS
The procedure of diagnosis starts with a cervical spine MRI as prescribed by a physician, chiropractor, or maybe a neurologist. The MRI scan reveals the abnormal bend of the vertebrae in the cervical region in the opposite direction or the bend might seem to have straightened out. Both of these occurrences indicate loss of cervical lordosis. In some rare cases, the MRI scan is inconclusive and is not enough to declare the ailment as a loss of cervical lordosis. Despite this, the symptoms are seen to persist as a manifestation of the underlying and undetected condition. Loss of cervical lordosis is usually confirmed by considering several things like the patient’s age, height, mass, deflection of neck angle from its natural tilt. Records of injuries, accidents like slips and falls are mandatorily taken into consideration. If all attempts to halt the progression fails, opting for surgery is the only way out.
Stem cell treatment might be the only possibly effective non-surgical method to treat the pain related to the loss of cervical lordosis.
IMPORTANCE OF A STABLE CERVICAL SPINE
A healthy cervical spine is necessary to enable proper movement of the neck and to ensure the efficient functioning of all muscles and nerves throughout the body of an individual. It is essential for the transfer of signals from different body parts to the brain and for the brain to send appropriate commands to the rest of the body in response. Therefore, a loss of cervical lordosis can hamper the functioning of the brain by cutting off the supply of oxygen and essential nutrients to it.
It is indeed a very serious medical issue and can result in complete paralysis if not acted upon with immediate effect. An increase in severity might even result in death.
REVERSAL OF LOSS OF CERVICAL LORDOSIS
Practicing regular strength and conditioning exercises might help in regaining most of the functions in the body areas which were previously affected by the loss of cervical lordosis. With a physician’s advice, few exercises can be tried at home which can be effective in curing the effects of loss of cervical lordosis and bring things back to normal. The common exercises are:
- Neck rotation
- Forward and backward shoulder retraction
- Neck flexion and extension
- Shoulder shrugs
- Neck side tilt
Check out Neck Curve Correction Exercise | Cervical Curve Restoration for a guided exercise session
Loss of cervical lordosis is a serious medical condition. Physicians and Chiropractors offer several types of treatments and ways to cure and alleviate the excruciating pain caused due to this ailment. A healthy diet with regular exercise is probably the only way to manage its effects in the long run.
If the obvious symptoms are not paid attention to in the early stages, the condition can get bad to worse. The only viable option left will be to undergo a spinal surgery which in turn may result in giving rise to numerous other disorders in the body.