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Your Shoulder Pain May Be Coming From Your Neck

I know from personal experience just how debilitating shoulder pain can be. When you talk to people who have not experienced it they say things like: "it's just your shoulder, how bad could it be?" or "just don't use that arm when you're doing ____". They don't understand how much your shoulder pain can decrease you quality of life. It can prevent you doing the workouts you love, playing with your kids, doing things around the house, and even working. I was in that same position not too long ago until I decided that I wanted to make a change so I could thrive, not just survive.

The shoulder joint is a very complex and busy space with all kinds of structures running through the area. Nerve bundles, muscle attachments, ligaments, bursa. You name it, they got it. This often leads to the cause of shoulder pain being misunderstood and mistreated.

There are a lot of different things that can cause shoulder pain and people frequently overlook what's happening at the joints above and below their pain. It's easy to fall into the trap of thinking that the problem must be coming from where you're feeling the pain. This is not always the case. When we have a dysfunction at the neck it can present in the shoulder through "referred pain". The chart you see above from Physiotutors is a great representation of how certain levels of the neck can cause symptoms elsewhere, including the shoulder.

Our society ends up with a lot of neck dysfunction because of the way our modern lives are set up. We're always looking down at phones, computers, or tablets, which keep our necks locked in the same position all day long. This then leads to the pain we experience in our shoulders, upper back, and neck. Instead of focusing on the symptoms, it's important that we find the root cause of your pain so we can address it directly. Otherwise, you will never truly relieve your symptoms.

If you're sick of not living life the way you want to because of your shoulder pain, come in to see us for a comprehensive evaluation to get you back to living life on your own terms.

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