What Causes Left Side Head, Neck and Shoulder Pain?

Left side head and neck pain may be due to a variety of reasons that can be stemmed from many different sources.

If you compare the symptoms of pain, you can discover the exact source of the pain and can also find out the best way to stop the pain permanently.

Left Side Head and Neck Pain
Left Side Head and Neck Pain

The human neck is made up of 7 smaller vertebrae that consist of the upper torso and the base of the skull.

These are designed in such a way to give proper support to the neck as well as to provide perfect motion for the head.

Though the flexibility is needed and helpful, it can also leave you prone to injury.

In case, when we move our neck or head suddenly to the left side it can cause damage to the muscles and hence severe pain can be experienced.

However, the pain may vary in its intensity depending on the severity of the underlying pathological condition.

When the left side of the neck is affected by a bad condition, the related muscles get tighten and may lead to pain in the head region too.

Here we discuss the causes of left side neck and head pain and how can we treat the causative conditions.


5 Main Causes of Pain On Left Side of Neck, Shoulder, and Head

At times when heavy strain or stress is created within the neck structures (like muscles, tendons, cartilages, nerves, bones, intervertebral disc, spinal cord, etc.), you may surely experience the primary symptom of pain in the neck region which is usually a one side neck pain.

If you are one of these sufferers, it is important for you to know that this type of pain is caused due to different reasons.

Let us know more in detail about why and when pain on one side of the neck is caused.

1- Muscle Tension

Muscle tension is one of the commonest causes of experiencing pain on the left side of the neck and head. This may be caused due to: sleeping in a wrong position, overuse of neck or muscle strain.

The problem if left untreated for a few days may get severe causing the neck to become stiff and numb.

2- Poor Posture

The core support system may get damaged if you sit with your neck spine bent and this can lead to left side neck and head pain.

Being knowledgeable about maintaining a good posture while at work can help you a lot and thereby helping you in avoiding painful conditions.

3- Neck Injuries

Neck staining injuries such as accidents, sudden movement or overuse can cause damage to neck muscles and it may become sore and stiff.

Generated pain may go around and move further to the head, shoulders or other parts of the body. Few important neck injuries that can cause pain in the left side of neck artery may include:

Whiplash Injury:

A rapid increase and decrease in body movement can cause damage to the spine.

For example, a motor vehicle accident can make quick acceleration and deceleration of the body which can further lead to the left side of the neck to stiff.

In this condition, you may also experience shoulder and arm pain, back pain, headache, fatigue, disturbed sleep, and dizziness.

Cervical Herniated Disc:

Lifting heavy weights or trauma can lead the spinal column to become damaged and the fibers among the spinal column can bulge out.

This can cause pain, tingling or numbness on the left side head and neck.

Pinched Nerve:

Pinched nerve may be from spinal stenosis, bone spurs or a herniated disc and these can cause pain to spread down to the neck and into the left side head together with numbness or weakness in this area.

Burners and Stingers Injury:

Sports injuries on the left side can make the nerve roots of the area to become compressed.

This further causes burning, stinging or pinching sensation on the neck that lasts for hours or days.


4- Degenerative Disorders

Aging causes wear and tear on the left side of the neck and head region which leads to damage and degenerative disorders.

Let’s look at some important degenerative disorders:

Cervical Osteoarthritis:

This condition leads to progressive degeneration of the cartilage and makes wear and tear to bones and joints.

Consequently, the body will make bone spurs in the neck which limits the range of movements along with generating a unique grinding sound.

Spinal Stenosis:

The compression of neutral routes on the left side of the neck can cause numbness in the area and can spread down the arm and shoulders.

Besides compression, aging, trauma, arthritis and hereditary factors can also cause spinal stenosis.

5- Certain Other Medical Conditions

A few of the medical conditions can affect the body as a whole and can have an impact on the left side of the head and neck too.

These important medical conditions include Fibromyalgia, Diffuse Idiopathic Skeletal Hyperostosis, spinal cord tumor, head and neck cancer, meningitis, swollen lymph nodes or sore throat, vascular neck pain, etc.

Best Treatment Options for Reliving One Side Neck Pain

Pain in the left side of the neck can be treated at home using some home remedies. Minor to shooting pain in the neck can be relieved using the below methods:

Walking is one of the best exercises for treating many health problems and getting relieved from the neck pain is one of them.

Walking will improve the blood circulation and also help in relieving any muscle tension that may be caused in the body.

You may start taking short walks for about three to five times in a week which may range from 10 to 15 minutes. You can then increase the time slowly as per your comfort level.

R.I.C.E. Therapy is a method that is also one of the best ways for relieving body pains including neck pain on the left side.

R.I.C.E. basically stands for Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation. And this therapy can be used safely without the prescription of a doctor.

Massaging your neck by using balm gel or ointment for the affected area can provide the cooling as well as warming sensation which will help in relieving the pain slowly.

However, it should care that the pressure applied should be very minimal as applying more pressure will be responsible for markedly increasing the pain.

Over the counter medications are generally prescribed by doctors for treating such type of body pain.

You can take medications such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen which helps in relieving the pain in the neck.

In case you are experiencing a sharp pain on the left side of the neck due to some injury or some accident, you should seek the medical advice of your doctor immediately.

But if your problem is due to other reasons like muscle pain, stretch, bad posture, etc you can try the above methods for a maximum of one week.

If the pain does not go away after a week you should then consult your doctor for getting the treatment.

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