Shoulder Pain

Posture is very important for the shoulder to work, with poor posture the rib cage, upper spine, shoulder blade and shoulder do not work very well and may well lead to tendonitis, reoccurring injury, frozen shoulder, pain and arthritis. The Shoulder is a joint which comprises of many components which need to work together in balance to ensure shoulder stability, strength and movement. The shoulder is a shallow ball and socket joint. The shallowness of the socket means that there are many muscles involved in keeping the joint together, Each one of these muscles is attached to the skeleton, in many cases the ribcage, upper spine and collarbone. The upper spine also known as the thoracic spine is vital to the shoulders integrity. To have restrictions in the upper spine means an imbalance in the shoulder muscles will occur. There are many muscles, ligaments and other tissues affected by the positioning of the thoracic spine. 

The shoulder blade, also known as the scapula sits on the upper part of the back (one on each side). The shoulder blade is not attached to the ribcage by any bones which makes it highly mobile. The shoulder joint is highly dependent on the shoulder blade for its stability and to aid normal movement.The shoulder blade itself is in need of good spinal mechanics, spinal shape and spinal movement. If there is a change in your spinal shape or if you have poor posture then the ribcage becomes distorted and the scapula does not glide smoothly over the ribcage, if the spine is twisted then certain ligaments and muscles become tight whilst others loosen off leading to a muscular imblalance and leads to shoulder pain such as tendonitis, frozen shoulder and reoccurring injury to the biceps and/or chest and back muscles.

Neck Problems....... When you think of your shoulder pain, have you ever thought that it could be coming from your neck? More often than not our chiropractors find that the pain across your shoulders and into your shoulder joint can be caused and/or contributed by problems with your neck! If spinal dysfunction within the spine occurs leading to changes in the neck vertebrae then muscles and nerves related to your shoulder can be affected. The nerves that exit from your neck can be impinged or irritated, which in turn can send pain into your shoulder and down into your arm. Some muscles in your neck, such as the trapezius muscle, extend down from your neck into the back of your shoulder joint. Muscle tension or spasm of these muscles can also refer pain into your shoulder and down into your arm. Muscle tension often accompanies a change in posture or spinal dysfunction and may lead to pain.

Frozen shoulder, also known as adhesive capsulitis is characterized by progressive pain and stiffness in the shoulder. At times your shoulder joint can become so stiff, it may be hard to move the shoulder joint at all. The pain is often felt deep in the shoulder joint and is made worse by lifting motions and also laying on that shoulder at night. The exact cause of this condition is unknown, but it sometimes develops following other shoulder injuries and prolonged poor posture (which itself leads to repetitive minor shoulder injuries). In some cases it’s thought that overuse of an injured shoulder can cause the shoulder muscles and connective tissues to stiffen up. Frozen shoulder is classified as a self limiting condition, which means that it resolves by itself without treatment. However, once the pain has subsided the stiffness may still remain. Treatment for frozen shoulder is crucial to help decrease the length of the condition and also to restore maximum functional capacity in the long term. Most people with frozen shoulder tend to improve within 6 months to 2 years.

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