Shoulder injuries are BRUTAL! You can be an athlete, weekend warrior, fitness enthusiast, or just someone that uses their arm/hands for a living…a shoulder injury can prevent you from doing the things you love and enjoy.

What many people don’t know is that the shoulder joint is one of the most complex joints of the body. It has A LOT going on…multiple muscles, joints, ligaments and neurovascular tissues. Sadly, due to the complexity of this joint, there can be a lot of triggers for pain. Additionally, because it has the most mobility of any joint in our body, that also means that it has the greatest risk of injury and instability.

Sometimes, shoulder issues can be managed with simple lifestyle modifications, stretches, strengthening, or even a few sessions with a massage therapist or a manual physical therapist. There are often times when traditional chiropractic care can help alleviate the symptoms. But there a few instances in which shoulder pain and dysfunction don’t resolve quite so simply. Why is that?

Shoulder pain can fail to progress after therapy because often times it is an undiagnosed neck issue that needs to addressed.

Muscles that are responsible for controlling the shoulder and arm originate in the mid to lower portions of your neck. You can think of nerves as the electrical wiring of the body. Imagine if you had interference to the electrical wiring in your home, you may notice that an outlet may not work or the lights may flicker or appliances are inoperable. Similarly to the electrical wiring in your house, if there is any interference to the nerves traveling to the shoulder, collateral damage such as; weakness, pain, tingling, muscles spasm, dyscoordination, and in some extreme cases, muscle atrophy may occur.

What Causes Interference To The Nerves?

It is commonly thought that structure dictates function.

Knowing this, years of research supports that there is a range of what may be considered ‘normal’ regarding spinal alignment. If your spine has shifted outside of these ‘normal’ ranges, the results are what we term a NeuroSpinal Shift. As this relates to the head and neck, if your head shifts forward in relation to your shoulders, regardless of the reason, it leads to a condition known as Anterior Head Syndrome (AHS).

anterior head syndrome

Patients presenting with AHS commonly report collateral damage such as shoulder pain and weakness, neck spasms, tingling and numbers in the arms and even headaches. The head shifting forward causes an excessive amount of wear and tear on the discs, bones, and nerves in your neck. Over time, interference to the nerves occur and result in shoulder dysfunction. Despite the many options for temporary relief, the issue will continue to arise unless the actual structure is corrected.

In chiropractic, similarly to dentistry and medicine, certain practices focus on certain areas. Just like not all doctors practice neurology or cardiology, not all chiropractors focus on NeuroSpinal Restoration of the spine.