Cervical spondylosis, also known as cervical osteoarthritis, or simply arthritis of the neck, is a degenerative condition that affects the cervical spine. The discs situated between the bones of the neck, known as cervical vertebrae, act as a cushion, absorbing the shock that occurs whenever you move your neck up and down or side to side.
However, these discs can become compressed, and when they do, the cartilage that surrounds the bones of the neck – the cervical vertebrae – can degrade, or wear away. If this happens, the vertebrae can begin rubbing together, and pain, stiffness, and reduced mobility can occur.
This is known as cervical spondylosis, and it is largely considered an age-related condition, as 90 percent of men and women aged 60 and above are afflicted with the condition. Prevention of this condition may not be possible; however, there are things that you can do to reduce the risk.
1. Maintain good posture.
It’s been determined that poor posture can increase the risk of cervical spondylosis. When you hold your neck in an unnatural position, you can damage the discs that are situated between the cervical vertebrae, or the bones of the neck.
Holding the neck in an unnatural way can increase the amount of pressure that is placed on the discs. As more pressure is placed on the discs, there’s an increased likelihood that these discs will compress or become more fragile, which can increase the risk of herniated discs and damage to the cervical spine.
Therefore, avoiding holding your neck in an awkward position for prolonged periods of time could prevent the risk of developing cervical spondylosis. If you have to hunch your neck over while working, for example, take frequent breaks, stretch your neck, and make sure to hold it in an upright position throughout the day.