Caution – Stiff Neck – or Torticollis?

Have you ever heard of a condition called torticollis? Chances are you have not, or if you have, you may not be absolutely sure what it means. But, it's almost certain that you've experienced it or have been presented by a client suffering from this painful situation. Symptoms of this condition include sever muscle spasms in the neck, and the inability to move the neck at times. While massage may immediately seem like the perfect therapeutic outlet for relief of this neck pain, therapists should take special consideration with torticollis clients.

Characterized by neck muscle spasms, torticollis sufferers are often unable to turn their neck to one side. The cause is still unknown in the medical field. However, whether it is hereditary or caused by an uncomfortable sleeping position, torticollis must be diagnosed by the client's doctor in order to rule out any other possible diseases that may be the cause of the pain. Once you determine that it's safe to proceed with massage treatment, a light, gentle touch will offer the most pain-relieving benefits.

Western medicine typically relies on pharmaceuticals and / or surgical procedures for temporary relief of pain, regardless of the specific condition. But what about long-term relief, or getting to the actual root of what causes torticollis in any given client? Many people do not want to resort to the standard medical treatments because of the possible unwanted side effects, giving massage therapists the upper hand. Because they're able to effectively alleviate the painful symptoms associated with torticollis through safe, non-toxic methods, bodyworkers are at an advantage for this type of pain relief.

Once you understand this condition and recognize its frequent occurrence, you will be better prepared to help your clients suffering with this intolerable neck pain. Learn more about torticollis and find out the best modalities to use to help your clients.