Shoulder pain is one of the most common complaints we hear about as chiropractors. Up to 70% of people experience shoulder pain at some point in their life. This is due to several muscles that move and are attached to the shoulder. There are various muscles, joints, ligaments, and tendons that are involved in this ball-and-socket joint that allow it to carry out more range of motion than any other joint in our bodies.
Due to the importance and frequent use of the shoulder, there are many ways shoulder pain can arise. This can be seen as a strain from sports or falls, tears in the rotator cuff, poor posture at the computer and sleeping on your side. Trauma to the shoulder can result from an unexpected injury or from frequent overuse. At Priestley Family Chiropractic, we specialize in finding and correcting these specific misalignments through gentle adjustments. Since there are so many different components in the shoulder, it is important to find exactly what is causing your pain and specifically addressing that area.
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How Our Shoulder Pain Care Plan Works
We will perform an in-depth consultation, palpate your spine for misalignments, and document your posture. Nerve scans will tell us exactly where pressure on your nervous system is causing muscle tension and affecting organ function. A chiropractor will also do a stress test and, if necessary, take digital x-rays.
2. Receive A
Plan Of Action
The chiropractor will review your test results and have you come back the next day to review their findings. They will give you their best recommendations on where to begin correcting your problem and the most cost effective way to take care of your health challenges. Each body is different and needs individualized care.
3. Get Back
To Living Life
At Priestley Family Chiropractic, each chiropractor believes you should be able to live your life the way you choose, without physical limitations or fears of injury. When your nervous system is functioning at its best you feel better, have more energy, sleep better, concentrate properly, and are an overall better person.
How We Address Shoulder Pain in Newport Beach, CA
Consultation and Exam
At Priestley Family Chiropractic, before we can assess your shoulder pain we must perform a thorough consultation and neurological exam. This consultation gives our doctors the opportunity to really listen and understand your specific problems and how they have affected your life. We can also capture key bits of information about your condition that help us find out what is causing it.
In the examination, we will perform a thorough evaluation of your spine and nervous system. We palpate your spine for subluxations and check your posture with bilateral scales to see if you are carrying your weight evenly. Then, we do nerve scans that inform us where you have pressure on your nerves, causing muscle tension or nerve interference, which affects the proper function of your organs and glands. We also assess how stressed your body is in a resting state with a Heart Rate Variability test. Depending on those findings, we do digital X-rays to locate subluxations, determine how long they have been there, and assess what phase of degeneration your spine is in. These tests allow us to give you corrective chiropractic care specific to you.
Pain is your body signaling that something isn’t functioning properly. When we find out what is causing it, we can correct function and eliminate shoulder pain.
Specific Chiropractic Care
Many times, shoulder pain is due to a condition called subluxation. Subluxations occur when a bone or section of the spine shifts out of its normal position. This causes interference and irritation to the nerves, which can cause symptoms such as shoulder pain, pain into the arms and shoulders, muscle stiffness and weakness, and restricted range of motion. Subluxations also affect how well your spine can move. If these misalignments are not corrected, over time, they can cause degeneration of the joints and lead to arthritis.
At Priestley Family Chiropractic, we perform specific adjustments to the spine which remove pressure from the nerves and allow the joints to move easier. Subluxations can be resolved through chiropractic care, but it can take time, especially for a chronic problem. By removing subluxation from the shoulder, proper function can be restored to the nerves and symptoms like shoulder pain can diminish. If the root cause of your problem is coming from a subluxation in the cervical spine, going down your shoulder and arm, you will continue to have symptoms until it is addressed. That is why Chiropractic is so crucial to eliminating shoulder pain.
Custom Therapeutic Exercise Plan
Shoulder pain often originates from muscle imbalances due to poor posture. Forward head posture is one of the most common issues that cause shoulder pain. This imbalance can cause muscle weakness and tightness in the neck, upper back, and shoulders that causes our posture to distort. At Priestley Family Chiropractic, our doctors create a custom exercise plan that will help to correct postural distortions and restore balance to the neck and shoulders. This balance and stability allow our patients to hold their chiropractic adjustments better and longer, providing more sustained relief from conditions like shoulder pain.
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Common Causes of Shoulder Pain in Newport Beach, CA
Osteoarthritis is a condition that causes narrowing of joint space and is commonly seen in the shoulder. It takes a long time to develop, sometimes even decades, and is usually the long-term result of things like poor posture, lack of motion, or traumatic injuries.
Our joints need to move in order to stay healthy. When we don’t move our joints enough, or have poor posture, they gradually wear down. Osteoarthritis can also cause changes in the bone called bone spurs. These abnormal growths irritate nerves in the shoulder, causing shoulder pain. Chiropractic care and exercise are essential for managing osteoarthritis and slowing down its progression.
Frozen shoulders can be very uncomfortable and limiting in your daily life. It is characterized by restriction and pain in the shoulder joint which occurs when the connective tissue surrounding the shoulder joint becomes thickened. Due to this thickening and limited space, it feels tight and you lose range of motion. The risk of developing frozen shoulder increases after shoulder surgery, a stroke, injury, or fracture.
There are 3 stages to frozen shoulders:
1. Freezing stage where you begin to notice a loss in your range of motion and pain when any movement is attempted.
2. Frozen stage is when pain may begin to subside. However, your shoulder is now extremely difficult to use as movement has become further restricted.
3. Thawing stage is the final stage in which your range of motion finally begins to improve.
As chiropractors, we see frozen shoulders quite frequently in various stages. The 3 stages can occur over several months and it’s never too late to receive relief.
The rotator cuff’s main role in the shoulder is to stabilize the joint by compressing the humeral head. There are 4 muscles that hold your arm in place which all help to make all of your shoulder movements. Due to continuous movement over the years, age increases risk of rotator cuff injuries. Unfortunately, some occupations increase the risk because they require quick upward motions such as construction workers and carpenters.
It’s important to do what you can to prevent this injury. This includes maintaining good posture, avoiding sleeping on your side, targeting your shoulder with certain exercises, avoiding smoking to increase blood flow, and avoiding motions with repetitive arm movements. More serious rotator cuff injuries may require surgery. Chiropractic is gentle and non-invasive. We have helped many patients avoid surgery so it’s important to get thoroughly assessed right away.
How can you tell if your shoulder is “strained” or “sprained”? Although the pain may feel very similar, the difference is that a strain involves the muscle or tendons in your shoulder, while a sprain involves ligaments that connect the bones in your shoulder.
The most common symptoms of a shoulder sprain include pain, swelling, tenderness when touching the area of injury, decreased range of motion when moving the shoulder, and instability. To find out if your shoulder is strained or sprained, it is important to get checked right away for the best results. At Priestley Family Chiropractic, we take x-rays and nerve studies to find the true cause of your shoulder pain. Depending on what we find, we can provide specific exercises to increase strength and stability in your shoulder.
Tendinitis is inflammation of a tendon that causes pain and swelling in your shoulder. This condition is commonly referred to as “Pitcher’s Shoulder” or “Swimmer’s Shoulder” due to repetitive shoulder motion which can result in micro tears in the tendon. This can make your shoulder painful and weak. Tendinitis can occur from an acute injury such as a fall or from consistent overuse due to sports or occupation. Proper technique is vital in any sport to avoid overload on tendons.
In order to avoid tendinitis, use limited force and limited repetitive movements. Although this may be unavoidable in many jobs and sports, it is important to slowly build up your activity level by stretching and taking it slow. It is common for shoulder tendinitis to resolve on its own; however, it may take weeks to months to recover. As chiropractors, we specialize in locating and finding the cause of your shoulder pain so it is important to get a thorough evaluation as soon as possible so it won’t continue to affect your daily activities.
Frequently Asked Questions About Headaches
Can Chiropractors help with shoulder pain?
Chiropractors specialize in working with your nervous system and the many different components in your shoulder which when irritated, cause various types of conditions. Seeing a chiropractor for a thorough evaluation and finding out specifically where your shoulder is inflamed often leads to much better results and drastic improvement.
What could shoulder pain be a sign of?
Since there are so many different muscles, joints, ligaments, and tendons that are involved in your shoulder, it is important to find out what exactly is causing your shoulder pain. By the time you are experiencing pain, the problem has usually already existed for some time. Do not cover up the pain with anti-inflammatory medication or Tylenol. It is important to address the problem now before it turns into a more severe issue later on.
What does a pinched nerve in the shoulder feel like?
A pinched nerve can be painful or uncomfortable. If the pinched nerve is coming from your neck, it may radiate through the shoulder and down your arm causing muscle weakness or tingling. Do not cover up the pain with anti-inflammatory medication or Tylenol. It is important to address the problem now before it turns into a more severe issue later on.
How do I get rid of a pinched nerve in my shoulder?
The best way to get a pinched nerve in your shoulder to stop hurting is to have a thorough evaluation with a doctor. Chiropractors work naturally with your body without the use of medicine or surgery. Instead of masking the problem, we will pinpoint where your shoulder nerve is irritated, and gently release pressure so nerve flow can be restored.