The Shoulder and Neck Pain Connection

The Shoulder and Neck Pain Connection

By Dr. Brenda Kingen

After 26 years in practice, there is one thing I am sure of: the way your body reports pain is unreliable. What do I mean by this? I have seen many patients that have come in complaining of shoulder pain and it’s not a shoulder problem, just like neck pain may not be a neck problem. Neck and shoulder pain so commonly overlap that some refer to it as “Schneck Pain”.

The issue I most often see is a patient with shoulder pain that refers from the neck. This is due to the multiple nerve pathways that connect the two. The three common causes for either issue are trauma, repetitive stress, and poor posture. Forward head posture with a rounded upper back and rolled shoulders is the most common cause.

When the Shoulder is the Problem
Injury to the rotator cuff, a group of muscles and tendons that stabilize the joint, is most often the cause of shoulder pain. The following may indicate you have a rotator cuff injury or other shoulder problem.

The Pain:
• Is Dull and aching
• Develops in the shoulder itself or on the outside of the upper arm
• Occurs when you reach overhead or behind your back or when lifting
• Persists at night
• Improves when you rest your arm
• Radiates into the upper arm, but not past the elbow

When the Neck is the Problem
The lower three pairs of the nerves of the neck supply the muscles of the shoulder and upper back.

You may have arthritis or nerve-related neck pain if it:
• Is Electric-like, stabbing, burning or tingling
• Radiates to the shoulder blade, or close to or on the side of your neck
• Radiates down past your elbow or into your hand
• Persists at rest
• Relieved when you support your neck
• Radiates down your arm when you extend or twist your neck.
It is crucial to see a specialist to determine where the pain is coming from so the proper treatment can be determined.
If posture correction is not part of your treatment protocol, neck and/or shoulder pain may become a chronic issue.

Call Kingen Chiropractic today and experience it for yourself… it works!

Dr. Brenda Kingen has 25 years of experience. She utilizes Chiropractic adjustments, Active Release Technique, Acupuncture, and Laser therapy in her practice.

Kingen Chiropractic Wellness Center
2001 S Hanley Rd # 220
Brentwood, MO 63144
(314) 646-0013
www.kingenchiropractic.com