Why Does My Neck And Back Feel Cold & What To Do About It?

Why Does My Neck & Back Feel Cold?

There are a lot of health issues which can start with minor symptoms. Neck and back take a lot of physical pressure/strain every day. With the changes in routine nowadays, it is very common to feel stiffness and pain in neck and back. Anything that is happening to your neck and back can be related to a number of organs in your body. In case you are feeling a cold sensation on the neck and back continuously, it can be a beginning of a major health issue. Such sensation is generally caused by a disease known as peripheral neuropathy.

Why Does My Neck & Back Feel Cold?

Peripheral Nerves & Their Connection To The Feeling Of Coldness In The Neck and Back

The peripheral nerves are responsible for transferring messages from central nervous system, brain and spinal cord to every part of the body. The peripheral neuropathy has the ability to affect one or more nerves. If you are feeling cold sensation on your neck and back it can mean that the nerve endings in that area are damaged because of the peripheral neuropathy.

There are many medical conditions that can cause peripheral nerve damage and cause peripheral neuropathy. Some of the most common causes of peripheral neuropathy are: Physical trauma, infection, exposure to toxins, overuse of drugs, repetitive injuries, metabolic problems, thyroid disorders, diabetes, chronic kidney disease, autoimmune disorder, Guillain-Barré syndrome, B12 deficiency, liver disease, cancer, stress and high blood pressure.

Other Than Coldness In The Neck And Back, What Are The Symptoms Of Neuropathy?

The symptoms can vary from person to person and according to the type of neuropathy that the patient has. It can start with the numbness of the nerves followed by cold sensations. The following are the most common symptoms of neuropathy:

  • Numbness.
  • Cold sensation in different body parts.
  • Loss of the ability to detect the change in temperature.
  • Lack of co-ordination between the body parts.
  • Shooting pains.
  • Burning sensation.
  • Hypersensitivity.
  • Twitching.
  • Paralysis and Bell’s palsy.

There are many different reasons that can cause neuropathy. The cause of the problem along with the set of nerves that it has damaged can make a huge difference when it comes to the symptoms such as your neck and back feeling cold.

The Association of Diabetes and Peripheral Neuropathy

You might have heard from the diabetic patients that they feel cold all the time. The main reason for such sensation is the nerve damage that is associated with diabetes. According to the studies, approx 60-70% of diabetic patients have some type of neuropathy. When the sugar levels increase in a diabetic patient, they damage the walls of the blood vessels that are responsible for transferring oxygen and nutrients to every part of the body. As they get damaged, the nerve endings are among the first organs to get affected by the loss of the oxygen. As the time passes by, the damage starts to affect the body and causes neuropathy in diabetic patients. One of the symptoms of nerve damage is the feeling of coldness in the neck and back. Such nerve damage makes it impossible for the patients to feel the pain in different parts of the body that can result in ulcers and other health issues also.

Diagnosis of Nerve Damage Causing Coldness in the Neck and Back

If you are feeling the cold sensation on the neck and the back make sure to check with the doctor. If you are a diabetic then it is even more important to check with the doctor immediately. The doctor will make you go through a number of different tests that will determine the nerve damage that has been caused. According to the results, the next course of action will be decided. In most of the cases, the nerve damage is reversible with the help of medication.

Treatment: What To Do About The Cold Feeling In The Neck And Back?

Most of the doctors first see if the symptoms of nerve damage, such as cold feeling in the neck and back, can be controlled with minor changes in the lifestyle. The doctor may ask you to wear natural fiber and avoid any type of blend that can cause skin irritation. The doctor may also ask you to get warm packs on the neck and back to reduce the cold sensation. Neuropathy can also be the result of overstress and high blood pressure. Using alternative therapies like acupuncture, massage therapy , meditation etc. can help in controlling these symptoms of neuropathy.

Medication to Treat Neuropathy. The doctors often give non-steroid anti-inflammatory drugs, such as ibuprofen to treat the pain from neuropathy. There are many ointments and creams that the doctor can prescribe to reduce the cold sensation in the neck and the back. In adverse cases, the doctor may ask you to opt for a surgery in order to open or remove the blocked nerve that has caused the problem of cold sensation in the neck and back in the first place.


There can be a lot of reasons which may cause a cold sensation on the back and the neck. However, most of them point to neuropathy, which is controllable. It is most common in the patients with diabetes. If you are feeling icy cold on the back of the neck and back make sure to check with the doctor and start the treatment as soon as possible to avoid any long-term damage.

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Team PainAssist
Team PainAssist
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Team PainAssist, Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:August 1, 2023

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