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Feeling Great: Reducing neck pain

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GREENSBORO, N.C. -- Getting older can really be a pain in the neck, and Dr. Todd Reiter says neck pain for men and women can be different.

Dr. Reiter is the Medical Director of the Inpatient Rehab Unit with High Point Regional Health System.

"There's a higher prevalence of neck pains with women than there are in men. In any given year there are 15% more women with neck pain than men. Women have a harder time recovering from neck pain as well."

Post-menopausal women have a 30% increase of neck pain, he added, compared to women who are pre-menopausal.

The first step for doctors is determining what is causing the neck pain. "Family stress, work stress, sleep habits, eating habits. All those things combine then we have to try to find out where the pain is coming from. is it muscular or from the bones or from the nerves?"

He says lowering stress, losing weight, stopping smoking, and being conscious of posture while sitting and sleeping can also alleviate neck pain.

To prevent neck pain Dr. Reiter suggests, "Every morning if you're in the shower, you can do exercises turning your head side to side. You can automatically keep it mobile, keep it moving."

"If you don't use it, you lose it!" he pointed out.