Your neck is made up of vertebrae that extend from the skull to the upper torso. Cervical discs absorb shock between the bones. The bones, ligaments, and muscles of your neck support your head and allow for motion. Any abnormalities, inflammation, or injury can cause neck pain or stiffness. Many people experience neck pain at the base of the skull or stiffness occasionally. In many cases, it’s from poor posture or overuse, or by sleeping in an awkward position. Sometimes, neck pain is caused by injury from a fall, contact sports, or whiplash. Most of the time, neck pain isn’t a serious condition and can be relieved within a few days. But in some cases, neck pain can indicate serious injury or illness and require a doctor’s care.
Few Causes That May Lead To Neck Pain At The Skull’s Base Of Skull
Dealing with neck pain is important, especially if it is under your skull. Pain and stress in this part of the neck can lead to other painful problems. For example, problems in this area can cause headaches. It can also lead to pain in the jaw joints. When local healers see people with pain under their skulls, there are five common causes:
1- Can We Get Pain At The Base Of the Skull Due To Medication Overuse
People who take painkillers two or more days a week because of a headache may have a “rebound headache” that can cause pain under the skull. Doctors do not know exactly why frequent use of painkillers may cause headaches in some people, but any painkillers have the potential to lead to the overuse of medication.
Some of these include:
- Over-the-counter combination pain relievers, such as Excedrin
- Certain migraine medications, like Zomig or Ergomar
In many cases, overdose stops when you stop taking the medication that causes them. However, if you suffer from frequent headaches, simply not taking painkillers may not be an option. Talk to your doctor about the frequency of your headache, any painkillers you are currently using to treat your headache, and the severity of your symptoms. Your doctor may suggest that you take one or more of these medications.
This condition can develop in the joint area between the two upper cervical vertebrae. Facet joint osteoarthritis can be the result of natural aging. It can also be caused by a neck injury. For example, whiplash can increase the risk of neck osteoarthritis, especially if left untreated.
3- Herniated disc
A disc is a structure found between two vertebrae and acts as a pillow between them. The disks have a solid outer layer and an inner gel-like inner layer. When the outer layer is torn or damaged, the inner layer may rupture or dislocate the herniate. This herniated disc can rub against the neck nerves near the base of your skull. Next, this irritation can cause pain in this area. Reduced spinal discs are located between the bones, or vertebrae, of your spine.
You may be at increased risk for a herniated disc if you have a family history of herniated discs or over 40 years. This is because the disc material naturally shrinks as we grow older and the lines holding the discs in place also begin to shrink. to weaken. As a result, slight pressure in the neck or sudden movement that will not cause damage to a young person can lead to a herniated disc in an adult.
- A sharp or shooting pain down your shoulder or arm when you cough or sneeze.
- Pain in your shoulder, arm, or hand.
- Weakness in the affected area.
- Numbness or tingling in your arms.
- Neck stiffness.
4- Tension Headache
This is the most common type of headache, estimated to affect two-thirds of adults in the US at some point. A depressive headache is often described as a strong feeling in the forehead, but the pain can spread to the sides and back of the head and down to the neck.
Common causes of headaches are depression and lack of sleep. But you may also have a depressive headache when you squeeze a collection of muscles under the skull called suboccipital muscles. These muscles can become strained due to misalignment, eye strain, or other injuries, such as whiplash. Whiplash, in particular, can have the effect of a compression head that starts at the bottom of your skull and extends over your entire head.
5- Occipital Neuralgia
Occipital neuralgia is a condition caused by inflammation or damage to the nerves that run from the top of the spine to the head. This swelling can cause a rash, a pain similar to shock in the back of the head or under the skull.
Causes of occipital neuralgia include:
- Trauma to the back of the head
- An infection of the nerves
- Pinched nerves or muscle tightness in the neck
- Arthritis in the upper cervical spine
In addition to throbbing pain at the base of the skull, other symptoms of occipital neuralgia include:
- Pain behind the eyes
- Shooting pains that start at the base of the head and go to the scalp
- An aching or burning sensation at the base of the skull
What Are The Treatments?
Here’s how you can ease neck pain symptoms:
Apply Ice/Heat Therapy
Ice treatment may reduce local inflammation and relieve pain. Place a packet of ice under the base of your skull as you sleep. However, you can get more relief using heat treatment, such as an electric heating pad. When you apply heat to the affected area, the local blood vessels expand, and blood flow to the neck increases, which can reduce muscle stiffness. Do not use a cold/heat source for more than 20 minutes at a time. Always use a barrier, such as a hand towel, between your skin and a source of cold/heat.
Non-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are illegal drugs such as ibuprofen (e.g., Advil, Motrin) and naproxen (e.g., Aleve). Taking them can help reduce inflammation and relieve headaches/neck pain. Follow the instructions on the label and consult your doctor or pharmacist to make sure you are using these medications safely.
Give Yourself A Neck Massage
Apply gentle pressure from your fingers under your skull. This massage can help to relax strong muscles and relieve tension. You can also place a folded towel under your head and neck as you lie down. Towel pressure can provide a gentle massage. Stop immediately if the massage increases your pain.
Do Chin Tucks Regularly
Some cases of occipital neuralgia or neck pain at the base of the skull may be associated with an improper posture that suppresses the nerves. The chin tuck exercise aims to stretch the muscles and connective tissue in the painful area and tighten the muscles that guide your head over your shoulders. Stand with your back up against the wall, feet apart at shoulder width apart. Look ahead, put your chin down, and pull your head up against the wall. Try to keep your head in a straight line without turning it back or shaking your head forward. Hold the stretch for 5 seconds before resting, then repeat 10 times. If this exercise increases your pain or discomfort, stop immediately.
If these self-care tips do not alleviate the pain of occipital neuralgia, visit your healthcare provider. You can get relief from prescribed pain medication and/or a prescribed physical therapy program. The doctor may consider giving a steroid injection to help relieve inflammation and reduce pain.
Few Testing & Diagnosis
Diagnosis of occipital neuralgia is complicated because no physical examination will reveal a positive or negative diagnosis. Typically, physical examinations and emotional tests will be performed to determine abnormalities. If physical and neurological exercises are incomplete, the doctor may prescribe additional images to rule out any other possible causes. A computed tomography scan (CT or CAT scan) will show the shape and size of the body structures. Some doctors may use occipital nerve blocks to confirm their diagnosis. However, you may also get a military neck.
What Is A Military Neck?
Military neck syndrome is a condition characterized by abnormal bending near the cervical spine. As a condition, a military neck disease is a form of lordosis, an umbrella term for abnormal bending of the spine.
In a healthy adult, the spine naturally has small curves to help the body absorb shock, stabilize the pelvis during movement, and support the weight of the cranium.
There are several possible causes for military neck syndrome, including degenerative disc disease, iatrogenic disorders, birth defects, and physical abuse, such as whiplash or ligament injury in the cervical canal. People suffering from military neck disease often experience one or more of the following symptoms: stiffness, generalized headache, neck pain, neck weakness, communication impairment, spinal impairment, bowel control problems, and, in extreme cases, paralysis. The severity and severity of these symptoms will depend on the severity and duration of the disease.