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You can embrace a brighter, pain-free future.

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Physical Therapy Navesink, NJ  Sciatica Pain Therapy Navesink, NJ

Physical Therpy For Injuries and Pain in Navesink, NJ

If there's one universal truth in life, it's that it can be unpredictable. Everyone experiences unexpected events that throw us off. While some surprises may only affect our bank accounts, such as home expenses, others can cause physical harm, such as car accidents that result in long-term pain and discomfort. Many Americans suffer from chronic neck and back pain - according to research, half of Americans over 18 develop musculoskeletal injuries that last longer than a year. These injuries often cause a range of mobility issues that make everyday tasks seem hard to do. Unfortunately, many people with chronic pain turn to addictive medications and invasive surgeries for relief, which tends to lead to further complications.

However, if you are experiencing chronic pain or mobility issues, there's good news: Safer and more effective options are available to you. Physical therapy in Navesink, NJ is one of the best solutions for eradicating pain, maximizing mobility, improving range of motion, building muscle strength, and helping you regain control of your body. At NJ Sports Spine & Wellness, our physical therapists and trainers offer customized programs designed for your body and address your pain symptoms. That way, you have the best possible chance of reclaiming a normal, active life, without surgery or harmful pills.

With the incorporation of therapeutic exercises and manual therapy as well as newer techniques and modalities like AlterG® Anti-Gravity Treadmills and DRX9000 Spinal DecompressionMachines, our physical therapy services can help address conditions such as:

  • Sciatica Pain
  • Ankle Pain
  • Back Pain
  • Elbow Pain
  • Headaches and Migraines
  • Hip Pain
  • Knee Pain
  • Neck Pain
  • Shoulder Pain
  • Wrist Pain
  • TMJ Pain
 Headaches And Migraines Therapy Navesink, NJ

Service Areas

When it comes to physical therapy in New Jersey, few clinics can match the care, compassion, and effective treatment options that NJ Sports Spine & Wellness can provide.

Why is Physical Therapy in Navesink, NJ So Important for Wellness?

Physical therapy can provide numerous benefits, such as pain reduction, enhanced joint and body movement, improved range of motion, proper alignment, and more. While the main goal of physical therapy is to restore function and facilitate a return to regular activities, these outcomes usually result from a broader rehabilitation process, wherein many patients learn a brand-new way of moving.

At NJ Sports Spine & Wellness, our physical therapists work closely with patients to understand their unique goals, preferences, and abilities. Based on their findings, they create a customized treatment plan that caters to the patient's specific needs.

Here are just a few specific examples of why physical therapy is crucial when recovering from an injury:

  • Physical therapy helps restore function and mobility after illness, injury, or surgery.
  • Physical therapy promotes healing and pain management by utilizing therapeutic modalities and exercises.
  • Physical therapy helps patients suffering from neurological conditions improve their independence.
  • Physical therapy helps seniors avoid falls by improving balance.
  • Physical therapy can improve flexibility and strength to enhance sports and physical activity performance.
  • Physical therapy facilitates injury prevention through education and analysis of proper body mechanics.
 Shoulder Pain Therapy Navesink, NJ

Whether you're searching for long-term pain relief or need to improve your strength and balance as you age, physical therapy from NJSSW can help.

Now that you understand why physical therapy is crucial for recovery and wellness, let's take a closer look at some of the most effective treatments at our physical therapy clinic in New Jersey.

 Wrist Pain Therapy Navesink, NJ

The DRX9000: Relief from Chronic Back and Neck Pain

Are you sick of living day-to-day with long-lasting neck or back pain? Have you searched high and low for a safe and effective alternative to surgery? The DRX9000 may be the answer you're looking for.

Beloved by high-level athletes and even celebrities, this advanced medical device employs non-surgical spinal decompression therapy to treat painful conditions such as:

  • Bulging Discs
  • Herniated Discs
  • Spinal Stenosis
  • Facet Syndrome
  • Sciatica
  • Arm Pain from Nerves in Your Neck

The DRX9000 is a device that has been approved by the FDA for treating herniated discs through spinal decompression therapy. This therapy works by applying equal amounts of pressure on your vertebral columns, which stretches your spine and creates a gap between spinal discs. This gap allows for better nutrient flow through your spine, which can help heal injuries gradually with regular treatment sessions. The DRX9000 also utilizes servo motors that rely on nested closed-loop feedback to customize therapy to your unique needs. By using DRX9000, you can often speed up your recovery by addressing your spinal disc issues ASAP.

No Harmful Medications Needed (Do we really need this paragraph or could we just mention it int he beginning about how it is a non-pharmaceutical method)

Perhaps the most significant advantage of the DRX9000 is that it provides a non-pharmaceutical method for relieving pain. With the opioid epidemic affecting the entire nation, many patients are reluctant to take prescription painkillers. The DRX9000 offers a secure and non-addictive alternative for pain relief that does not require medication.

During the course of the treatment, the patient will lie down on a specially designed table that is connected to the machine. The table will then be gently stretched as the machine creates negative pressure within the affected disc. This process will be repeated over a series of sessions, typically ranging from 20 to 30 sessions, depending on the patient's specific condition.

The DRX9000 treatment is considered to be safe and effective for many patients. It is designed to be gentle on the body, and patients usually experience little to no discomfort during their sessions. The machine is also equipped with advanced safety features, including sensors that can detect any sudden movements and stop the machine if necessary.

Expedite Rehab and Training with the AlterG® Anti-Gravity Treadmill

The AlterG® Anti-Gravity Treadmill boasts NASA Differential Air Pressure (DAP) technology, which is a highly accurate air calibration system that leverages your actual body weight to achieve exceptional results in rehab and training. By utilizing a pressurized air chamber, the AlterG allows you to move freely and without pain, as it uniformly reduces gravitational load and body weight by up to 80% in precise 1% increments. This process helps foster improved muscle strength, balance, function, range of motion, and overall fitness.

What Makes the AlterG® Anti-Gravity Treadmill So Effective for Physical Therapy in CItyname, State?

AlterG®'s state-of-the-art treadmill provides an entire range of benefits, such as mimicking natural movement and rhythm without the contrived feel of hydrotherapy or harnesses attempting to imitate real-life strides and motions. Additionally, it's beneficial for speeding up recuperation after orthopedic injuries or surgeries by enabling early mobilization and retaining strength. Furthermore, it's excellent for sports recovery since athletes can utilize it to maintain their physical fitness.

Some of the numerous benefits of using the AlterG® Anti-Gravity Treadmill include:

  • Accelerated Recovery Time
  • Relief from Impact-Related Pain and Discomfort
  • Customized Programs Suited to Your Needs
  • Effective Solution for All Ages
  • Safe and Controlled Environment
  • Improves Motivation and Confidence
  • Used by Elite Athletes and Celebrities

The AlterG Anti-Gravity Treadmill is a revolutionary piece of equipment that has transformed the field of physical therapy. With its list of unique features and superhero-worthy benefits, this anti-gravity treadmill is a game-changer that can help you achieve your fitness and recovery goals while also minimizing the risk of injury.

 Chronic  Pain Therapy Navesink, NJ
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Physical Therapy Navesink, NJ

Experience Optimized Healing with LiteCureâ„¢ Low-Level Laser Therapy

After reading the headline above, you might be asking yourself, "Are lasers really used for physical therapy in cityname, state?" The answer to your question would be a resounding "Yes!" This advanced type of laser therapy harnesses the power of light through photobiomodulation (PBM), which is revolutionizing how patients heal and deal with pain.

Photobiomodulation (PBM) is a medical process that utilizes targeted light to activate the body's natural healing mechanisms. By penetrating deep into the tissue, photons interact with mitochondria (the cellular powerhouses in your body) to increase energy production. This interaction triggers a biological cascade that leads to increased cellular metabolism. As a result, PBM can reduce pain, accelerate tissue repair, and enhance overall well-being.

Low-level laser therapy (LLLT) is a non-invasive and painless treatment that utilizes specific wavelengths of light to stimulate healing and reduce pain. It works by penetrating the skin and tissues to promote cellular activity and increase blood flow, which in turn helps to reduce inflammation, relieve pain, and accelerate the healing process.

LLLT has been shown to be effective for a variety of conditions, including musculoskeletal injuries, arthritis, neuropathy, and more. It is a safe and gentle treatment option that can aid in regaining function and mobility from injuries, accidents, surgeries, and other conditions. That makes it a viable and trustworthy addition to your personalized physical therapy plan from NJ Sports Spine & Wellness.

LLLT has shown promising results for challenging conditions that other treatments can't match. Some of the most common conditions treated include:

  • Muscle Pain
  • Pain from Tendinopathy
  • Osteoarthritis Pain
  • Swollen Joints
  • Myofascial Pain
  • Back and Neck Pain
  • Pain from TMJ
  • Achilles Tendon Injury Pain
  • Plantar Fasciitis Pain
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If you're slogging through life and suffering from one or more of the conditions above, you should know that there is hope for pain relief. Contact NJ Sports Spine & Wellness today to find out if low-level laser therapy is right for you.

Freeze Away Pain and Swelling with Ice Compression Therapy

Game Ready Ice Compression Therapy is an advanced treatment technique that combines the advantages of modern cryotherapy (ice therapy) with the proven benefits of compression therapy. This clinically proven, synergistic approach is widely used in sports medicine, physical therapy, orthopedics, and post-operative care to speed up recovery, alleviate pain and inflammation, and enhance rehabilitation.

Understanding the Powerful Benefits of Ice Compression Therapy

 Sciatica Pain Therapy Navesink, NJ

Game Ready Ice Compression Therapy is an advanced treatment technique that combines the advantages of modern cryotherapy (ice therapy) with the proven benefits of compression therapy. This clinically proven, synergistic approach is widely used in sports medicine, physical therapy, orthopedics, and post-operative care to speed up recovery, alleviate pain and inflammation, and enhance rehabilitation.

The "cold" component of ice compression therapy helps nullify nerve-ending sensitivity, which provides pain relief. The extra compression gives you even more pain relief by reducing swelling and pressure on limbs and other body parts.

By improving lymphatic flow and enhancing blood circulation, compression therapy can help reduce swelling and edema, thereby improving your recovery process and simultaneously reducing pain and discomfort.

The concurrent use of cryotherapy and compression can enhance the body's innate healing mechanisms by reducing inflammation, mitigating tissue damage, and stimulating tissue repair.

Game Ready's combination therapy has been shown to be effective in improving joint flexibility and range of motion by promoting tissue healing. This treatment can be a great option for those looking to alleviate discomfort and improve overall joint health.

 Headaches And Migraines Therapy Navesink, NJ

Whether you're recovering from surgery or you're trying to manage chronic pain in your back or joints, ice compression therapy may be the advanced treatment you need. Contact NJSSW today to learn more about how this treatment can help you live an active life free of pain.

NormaTec Compression Therapy:

A Non-Invasive Option for Enhanced Recovery

Game Ready Ice Compression Therapy is an advanced treatment technique that combines the advantages of modern cryotherapy (ice therapy) with the proven benefits of compression therapy. This clinically proven, synergistic approach is widely used in sports medicine, physical therapy, orthopedics, and post-operative care to speed up recovery, alleviate pain and inflammation, and enhance rehabilitation.

What Makes NormaTec Compression Therapy Best for Physical Therapy in Cityname, State?

Game Ready Ice Compression Therapy is an advanced treatment technique that combines the advantages of modern cryotherapy (ice therapy) with the proven benefits of compression therapy. This clinically proven, synergistic approach is widely used in sports medicine, physical therapy, orthopedics, and post-operative care to speed up recovery, alleviate pain and inflammation, and enhance rehabilitation.

NormaTec's compression therapy devices have undergone continuous refinement and improvement since their inception. The adjustable settings of their system enable users to regulate the intensity, duration, and pattern of compression, thereby enabling our skilled providers to tailor treatment to suit the specific requirements and comfort levels of each patient.

 Shoulder Pain Therapy Navesink, NJ

Experience Holistic Wellness with Cupping Therapy in New Jersey

In the realm of holistic wellness, cupping therapy is a venerable and time-honored practice that has proven to be an effective technique for managing pain and enhancing blood flow. At NJ Sports Spine & Wellness, we recognize the diverse benefits of cupping therapy, which we offer at both our Matawan and Marlboro, NJ locations.

This ancient technique creates suction on your skin using specialized cups that help promote blood flow, muscle relaxation, and pain relief.

Why is Cupping Therapy Helpful for Physical Therapy in CItyname, State?

 Wrist Pain Therapy Navesink, NJ

At NJ Sports Spine & Wellness, we believe that incorporating holistic treatments into physical therapy can greatly benefit our patients. As part of our efforts to alleviate stress and manage chronic pain or conditions, we offer cupping therapy as one of those holistic treatments. This modality has been proven effective and offers numerous benefits for physical therapy, which include:

Cupping therapy can help release muscle tension and relieve back pain. The suction from the cups releases fascial restrictions, decreases muscle tightness, and relieves muscle knots, providing relief from pain caused by muscular tightness or strain.

Our skilled practitioners and physical therapists use modern cupping devices and techniques to create consistent suction on the skin, which stimulates blood flow and encourages oxygen-rich blood to flow into muscles and tissues. This improved circulation can reduce inflammation, remove toxins, and promote healing.

Cupping therapy can relieve back pain by improving circulation, reducing muscle tension, and increasing lymphatic drainage. It's a natural and non-invasive approach that can improve mobility and quality of life.

Cupping therapy uses a gentle suction and pulling sensation that helps ease back pain and reduces stress by creating a calming effect on the body and mind, promoting physical and mental healing.

Reclaim Your Mobility with Physical Therapy in Navesink, NJ

At NJ Sports Spine & Wellness, we always prioritize your well-being and offer comprehensive care tailored to your needs. With customized physical therapy tailored to your specific needs, we provide a drug-free, non-invasive, and highly effective treatment path for pain relief and recovery. From tried-and-true techniques to cutting-edge treatments, we're New Jersey's top choice for innovative physical therapy.

Take the first step towards a pain-free, vibrant life by contacting our office today. It all starts by scheduling your initial consultation. With our highly-trained and licensed specialists by your side, you can embrace a brighter, pain-free future.

 Chronic  Pain Therapy Navesink, NJ

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Latest News in Navesink, NJ

Beloved Monmouth County sandwich shop closes its doors

ATLANTIC HIGHLANDS — Another beloved New Jersey eatery has shuttered its doors.Big Mike’s Little Red Store, in the landmark Navesink red building in Atlantic Highlands, has been feeding locals and visitors, alike for the past five years.But on Aug. 15, the shop famous for its sandwiches, announced on social media that it was closing its doors immediately.ADVERTISEMENT“As we close the chapter on five amazing years at Big Mike’s Little Red Store, we want to extend our heartfelt gratitude to a...

ATLANTIC HIGHLANDS — Another beloved New Jersey eatery has shuttered its doors.

Big Mike’s Little Red Store, in the landmark Navesink red building in Atlantic Highlands, has been feeding locals and visitors, alike for the past five years.

But on Aug. 15, the shop famous for its sandwiches, announced on social media that it was closing its doors immediately.

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“As we close the chapter on five amazing years at Big Mike’s Little Red Store, we want to extend our heartfelt gratitude to all our incredible customers and the wonderful community we’ve had the pleasure of serving,” according to a Facebook post.

The post goes on to say that Big Mike’s is looking forward to its next big venture.

“We are in the midst of an exciting transition, preparing to open our brand-new restaurant, Saltwater Social Bar and Kitchen by Big Mike,” the statement reads.

The Saltwater Social Bar and Kitchen will be in another historic New Jersey location but the post does not say where that location will be.

Big Mike’s Little Red Store ended the announcement by saying it was excited to embark on this new culinary journey, and can’t wait to create new memories with the community.

Customers took to Facebook to respond to the announcement. Many wished Big Mike luck in the opening of his new restaurant, but at the same time said they would miss the sandwiches.

“Sad day for our local area……nothing more to say”

“Can’t wait to have many drinks at the new spot, but we’re really going to miss you guys at the Red Store! Wishing you the best of luck!”

“Best of luck on the new restaurant! I am not sure what we would have done during the pandemic without your store and amazing food!!”

“Looking forward to the opening. Will miss the sandwiches”

Big Mike’s Little Red Store’s menu of sandwiches was a big draw for locals and visitors.Some menu favorites included:

Poppa (charred bologna, two eggs with cheddar, potato pancake, and Red Store ketchup on a hard roll)

My Cousin Vinny (chicken cutlet, aged provolone, tomato, arugula, balsamic glaze, and lemon aioli on semolina bread)

Big Michelle (fried eggplant, chipotle aioli, fresh mozzarella, avocado, tomato, roasted red pepper and arugula)

Red Hook Bomber (hot roast beef, fresh mozzarella, fried eggplant, and gravy on semolina sub)

Big Mike’s also had an extensive catering menu, as well.

Navesink Heritage Association and NJ Friends of Clearwater Free Event – “Sailing and Singing by the River”

RED BANK, NJ: The New Jersey Friends of Cleawater has teamed up with the non-profit organization Navesink Maritime Heritage Association, for a free sailing and singing event in Marine Park on Sunday, September 3, 2:00pm – 5:00pm.“We’re inviting all to ...

RED BANK, NJ: The New Jersey Friends of Cleawater has teamed up with the non-profit organization Navesink Maritime Heritage Association, for a free sailing and singing event in Marine Park on Sunday, September 3, 2:00pm – 5:00pm.

“We’re inviting all to join us for a FREE sail on our Garvey boat along the beautiful Navesink River. No prior registration needed, then, join in for a FREE concert of songs by the NMHA’s Circle of Song group,” said Michael Humphreys, NMHA Secretary & Trustee.

What: NMHA & NJ Friends of Clearwater – Sailing and Concert. Bring your own instrument and sing along with them!

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Where: 1 Marine Park, Red Bank NJ

When: Sunday, September 3

Time: 2:00pm – 5:00pm

Bring a chair and settle in for an entertaining afternoon!

The Navesink Maritime Heritage Association is dedicated to engaging Eastern Monmouth County with maritime and water related historical, skill building, environmental, and recreational activities, and encouraging responsible use of the Navesink estuary through its Discover, Engage, and Sustain approach.

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Check out the NMHA store that offers very interesting local history books (great gift!), and unique clothing items by clicking HERE.

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Dredging Begins In Shrewsbury, Navesink Rivers This Week

The U.S. Army will dredge the entrance of the Shrewsbury/Navesink rivers at Sandy Hook, plus the Shrewsbury as far as Long Branch:|Updated Wed, Jul 26, 2023 at 10:43 am ETHIGHLANDS, NJ — This week was the start of a major dredging project in the Shrewsbury and Navesink rivers.The dredging started Tuesday, and it was announced by Congressman Frank Pallone (D-NJ6), who was in Highlands that day for the start of the project.The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will dredge both the entrance of the Shrewsbury and N...

The U.S. Army will dredge the entrance of the Shrewsbury/Navesink rivers at Sandy Hook, plus the Shrewsbury as far as Long Branch:

|Updated Wed, Jul 26, 2023 at 10:43 am ET

HIGHLANDS, NJ — This week was the start of a major dredging project in the Shrewsbury and Navesink rivers.

The dredging started Tuesday, and it was announced by Congressman Frank Pallone (D-NJ6), who was in Highlands that day for the start of the project.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will dredge both the entrance of the Shrewsbury and Navesink rivers at Sandy Hook, as well as the Navesink River to Red Bank and the Shrewsbury River as far as the Branchport Avenue Bridge in Long Branch — a total of approximately 14 miles. This is the federal channel that covers most of the waterway boaters use.

The dredging project will take place in three phases:

The first phase includes dredging sand material at the mouth of the Shrewsbury River in Sandy Hook Bay to the Rt. 36 bridge. The second phase will include dredging the remaining sandy material down the Shrewsbury River into the Navesink River as far as the Oceanic Bridge. Sand will then be pumped onto portions of Monmouth Beach. The third phase includes dredging the rest of the federal channel inside the two rivers.

Find out what's happening in Little Silver-Oceanportwith free, real-time updates from Patch.

Congressman Pallone secured $26 million for maintenance dredging of the rivers in a federal spending bill signed by President Joe Biden last year.

“I’m proud to announce the start of the Shrewsbury and Navesink dredging project today," said Pallone Tuesday. "I’ve heard from so many people in the communities along the rivers and the boaters who use the channels regularly about the importance of this project."

"This project will ensure safe access to the Shrewsbury and Navesink rivers for recreational and commercial fishing and boating uses that are vital to the regional economy,” said NJ's DEP Commissioner Shawn LaTourette. “As an important additional element, the sand dredged to improve navigation will be used to nourish beaches in areas of need in Monmouth Beach."

Highlands Mayor Carolyn Broullon, Oceanport Mayor Jay Coffey and Sea Bright Mayor Brian Kelly were on hand Tuesday to announce the start of the dredging.

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Red Bank Navesink Fire Co. Raising Funds To Help Displaced Families

Red Bank Navesink Hook & Ladder Fire Company's Santa Run will also help two families who lost all their possessions in an apartment fire. |Updated Mon, Dec 18, 2023 at 1:14 pm ETRED BANK, NJ — This year's tradition of the Red Bank Navesink Hook & Ladder Fire Company's Santa Run continues, but with the added goal of helping two families displaced in a recent fire, the company says.Navesink Hook & Ladder, along with help from other members and fire companies in Red Bank, will still be spreading Christma...

Red Bank Navesink Hook & Ladder Fire Company's Santa Run will also help two families who lost all their possessions in an apartment fire.

|Updated Mon, Dec 18, 2023 at 1:14 pm ET

RED BANK, NJ — This year's tradition of the Red Bank Navesink Hook & Ladder Fire Company's Santa Run continues, but with the added goal of helping two families displaced in a recent fire, the company says.

Navesink Hook & Ladder, along with help from other members and fire companies in Red Bank, will still be spreading Christmas cheer with the Santa Run, but it will donate monetary donations to the families displaced in the fire Wednesday at Greentree Apartments, the company says.

"Recently, two Red Bank families lost everything, including their homes, to a fire. The monetary donations will go to these families in an effort to help them rebuild their lives," the fire company announced.

"Imagine being a parent and having to deal with having your family displaced by a fire. Now add to that the financial resources to replace everything in your house - clothes, furniture, and electronics, to name a few items. Add on to that burden the desire to try to keep the holiday season a joyous one. Our hope is to help ease these burdens."

The company asks that those who can help visit its Santa Run website to donate. In addition to the website, the company also accepts Venmo and PayPal.

Find out what's happening in Red Bank-Shrewsburywith free, real-time updates from Patch.

Here is the donation information:

The Drop date and time is Saturday, Dec. 23, from 4:30 to 9 p.m., according to the fire company website.

The fire last Wednesday morning affected two apartments at the Greentree complex on Spring Street. Police on the scene assisted by helping to evacuate surrounding apartments, he said. You can see pictures of the incident on the Red Bank Fire Department Facebook site.

There also has been a GoFundMe site set up for one of the families, organized by a family member. See the site for more details.

None of the residents was home during the fire, and there were no injuries to residents or firefighters. According to a Red Bank Fire Department social media post all Red Bank Fire Department units responded, along with mutual departments from Little Silver Fire Department, Northside (Tinton Falls) and RIT Team of River Plaza Fire (Middletown).

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'Undetermined bacteria' is killing menhaden fish in Raritan Bay, Navesink River

An undetermined species of Vibrio bacteria is causing the death of menhaden baitfish in the Monmouth County waters, state environmental and wildlife officials have said.Menhaden, a critical fish in the marine food web, have been spotted belly up or rotting on the banks of the Oceanport and Branchport creeks, two feeder creeks to the Shrewsbury River, at Marine Park in Red Bank on the Navesink River, as well as along the Raritan Bay shoreline.The fish kills have generally been a few hundred fish each.Larry ...

An undetermined species of Vibrio bacteria is causing the death of menhaden baitfish in the Monmouth County waters, state environmental and wildlife officials have said.

Menhaden, a critical fish in the marine food web, have been spotted belly up or rotting on the banks of the Oceanport and Branchport creeks, two feeder creeks to the Shrewsbury River, at Marine Park in Red Bank on the Navesink River, as well as along the Raritan Bay shoreline.

The fish kills have generally been a few hundred fish each.

Larry Hajna, a spokesperson for the Department of Environmental Protection or DEP, said the Division of Fish & Wildlife is investigating the mortalities and others that occurred in the fall.

NJ fishing:58-pound striped bass caught and more. Don't miss our Jersey Shore fishing reports

He said Fish & Wildlife has preliminarily identified an undetermined species of bacteria in the Vibrio family of bacteria as the cause of the mortalities. Vibrio species are quite diverse and common in marine habitats, Hajna said.

"More laboratory work is being done to determine the specific species of bacteria. The DEP is also working with the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission to better understand the mortalities," Hajna said.

Watch: Dolphins, whales feed off Atlantic Highlands, bunker baitfish hit rivers

The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission is the federal agency that manages the stock of menhaden, or bunker as they're also known, along the East Coast.

The fish are commonly used for bait by fishermen and crabbers and are a high source of Omega 3 fatty acids. Coastwide commercial netters can harvest 214,289 tons of menhaden a year. Most of that is processed in Reedsville, Virginia, by Omega Protein for fishmeal and dietary supplements.

Vibrio bacteria have been known to cause illnesses in humans such as gastroenteritis.

Jeff Tittle, director of the New Jersey Sierra Club, said the mortalities are a red flag for serious issues affecting the water quality.

"The Vibrio bacteria causing these fish kills is primarily linked to nutrient pollution from sewage, septic and stormwater runoff. It’s also linked to warmer water, which is connected to climate change. ... This is a direct result of the DEP’s failure to deal with water pollution from nutrients and raw sewage,” Tittel said.

As of now, the DEP said the only fish being affected is the menhaden.

Hajna said there is nothing to suggest human health or other fish, shellfish or wildlife are at risk, but with any wildlife Fish & Wildlife recommends people do not handle, collect or consume any dead fish or those showing signs of disease.

Hajna said similar mortalities have been reported in other parts of the Northeastern U.S.

When Jersey Shore native Dan Radel is not reporting the news, you can find him in a college classroom where he is a history professor. Reach him @danielradelapp; 732-643-4072; dradel@gannettnj.com.

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