1) It is a bit difficult to say without actually being able to see your MRI images, but if it is minor changes at C5-6, then yes, I would expect the pain to get much better.
2) It is impossible to know when in the past you may have developed that disc bulge, since many people have them without any symptoms. So it is possible that this occurred 6 years ago, but there is no way to prove this. It is similarly impossible to put the blame on lifestyle issues.
3) No, this does not sound like bad management, and no, that would not make a condition chronic.
4) I would have a neurosurgeon review the actual images of the cervical spine MRI, to ensure that there is no significant "foraminal stenosis", which could be pinching a nerve to the side. In addition, a test called a EMG, performed by a neurologist or physiatrist, can help to determine if there is nerve root irritation as the cause for your pains in the neck and down the arms.