Torticollis is a medical condition that affects the muscles of the neck. Abnormally tight muscles on one side of the neck causes the head to tilt or twist from normal position.
The sternocleidomastoid muscles (SCM) are on each side of the neck and originate at the sternum and clavicle and insert on the mastoid process at the temporal bone located just below the ear.
The sternocleidomastoid muscles are involved in turning the from side to side or cervical rotation.
Torticollis can either be congenital or acquired. Congenital torticollis exists at birth and the reason for this not clearly understood. Birth trauma or intrauterine malposition can result in damage to the sternocleidomastoid muscle.
Acquired torticollis is a condition in which the muscles of the neck spontaneously contract resulting in moderate to severe neck stiffness. Sometimes people wake up unable to turn or move their head in certain positions and there may be no trauma or activity involved.
We often treat cases of acquired torticollis with our comprehensive treatment plans designed to reduce neck stiffness.