A stiff neck is typically characterised by pain and soreness in the neck and/or shoulder and difficulty moving the neck. It is usually felt upon waking up in the morning and can affect your daily activities.
Posture can be defined as the “alignment of body parts in relation to one another at any given moment”, and having a good posture is essential for a pain-free life. On the other hand, poor posture brings about a whole set of issues such as decreased breathing capacity, poor internal organ function, reduced mental function, musculoskeletal imbalance, and a poor flow of Qi. The last two can lead to chronic pain. Muscular imbalance further aggravates the issue of poor posture, thus resulting in an unending cycle.
Desk-bound work is a common contributing factor to many chronic pain haunting individuals nowadays. As individuals focus more on lifestyle changes such as exercising and dieting to achieve a healthier and pain-free life, they tend to overlook a major component for their daily routine. Singaporeans usually spend around 8 hours a day working and for most of us, it involves being seated behind a computer for hours straight. The cold air conditioning and our thin attire to brave the scorching weather, together with a poor sitting posture, brews trouble (especially pain) for the white-collar workers.
According to the ancient Chinese medical classic《黄帝内经·素问·宣明五气篇》：“久视伤血，久卧伤气，久坐伤肉，久立伤骨，久行伤筋，是谓五劳所伤”, it describes how five different forms of ‘overuses’ affect our body. Of the five, “久坐伤肉” is of the most relevance. It means that prolonged sitting is detrimental to our muscles such as its strength and elasticity, both of which are essential in the function and health of our joints and the prevention of complications resulting in pain.
The spinal cord may look like a single piece, but it consists of a column of nerves protected by the myelin sheath and secured by 31 vertebrae extending down the length of the spine. Medical pathology of the spinal cord and its related dysfunctions can be classified into 4 sections and 1 sub-part: Cervical, Thoracic, Lumbar, Sacral and Coccygeal region. Implications include nervous, musculoskeletal, sympathetic and internal conditions.