James visited Dynamic Sports Physical Therapy in New York City complaining of headaches, neck pain, fatigue, and difficulty concentrating and sleeping. He told his therapist that he started noticing this pain after first discovering that he was going to be a father. Increased stress levels seemed to make James’ symptoms worse, and he reported that the pain and lack of sleep—in particular—had become gradually worse over the past four months.
James’ therapist, Ashli, performed a thorough evaluation and asked him a series of questions to investigate the source of his painful issues. The evaluation revealed that he had reduced range of motion in the cervical (neck) portion of his spine, decreased strength in the neck muscles responsible for flexion, decreased stability of the shoulder blade (scapular) muscles, and increased tension in another set of neck muscles. A biofeedback assessment also showed that James had an increased heart rate and breathing rate. Based on these findings, Ashli determined that James was dealing with migraines and chronic neck pain.
Treatment targets neck strength and range of motion
Before beginning treatment, James stated that his primary goals were to decrease his pain levels, experience fewer headaches, and get back into regular exercise. His treatment program consisted of two sessions per week for six weeks, and its central focus was to improve his cervical range of motion and cervical stability, while also boosting his ability to control physiological responses like heart rate and skin conductance with biofeedback. This was accomplished with pain science education, aerobic exercises, exercises to improve cervical and scapular stabilization, use of a manual (hands-on) therapy technique called cervical distraction with suboccipital release, biofeedback with breathing and relaxation exercises, and positive reinforcement.
James also received two sessions of acupuncture, in which a combination of needles were inserted in various areas of the neck and shoulders. This included stimulating the Shen Men point and vagal nerve in the ears, which was intended to activate the parasympathetic nervous system in order to treat James’ insomnia.
After 12 sessions of physical therapy, James told his therapist that he no longer had any headaches or neck pain, and was able to start sleeping for 6-8 hours. He also reported feeling more control over his physiological responses and has continued practicing progressive muscle relaxation and paced breathing exercises at home. On top of that, James has been able to resume exercising regularly, and takes more time to pursue activities to reduce his stress levels.
James had this to say about his outcome after completing treatment: “My experience at Dynamic Sports was amazing! Ashli was always attentive to my situation, listened, and helped me become more optimistic. She gave me control back in my life. I was hooked when she said, ‘I will help you, help yourself get better.’ It worked.”
See for yourself what’s possible with Dynamic Sports Physical Therapy in New York City
Ashli and the rest of the team here couldn’t be happier to hear the kind words from James and see such a marked improvement after only six weeks of treatment. His story shows what’s possible when a treatment program is based on a detailed examination and carried out with commitment by the patient. If you happen to be dealing with any pain or other restrictive symptoms, we invite you to find out for yourself what can be accomplished with a personally customized exercise plan from us. Contact Dynamic Sports Physical Therapy in New York City at 212-317-8303 to schedule an appointment today, and get started on your path to recovery.