Causes - Shoulder and Arm Pain:
The cause of many instances of shoulder or arm pain is obvious. You do something to injure the arm or shoulder and immediately feel pain. You may have broken a bone or dislocated your shoulder. Perhaps you strained tendons or ligaments by carrying too much weight for too long, by lifting something that was too heavy, overreaching or overexerting your arm-as when playing sports when you’re out of shape-or by keeping your arm in an awkward position or even by sleeping on the shoulder. The resulting pain may range from an annoying ache to an acute pain that makes it hard for you to use the injured arm.
There are other, less-obvious causes of shoulder or arm pain. Each is distinguished by where it is felt, whether it comes on suddenly or over time, when it is at its worst, if the pain extends to other joints in your body, and if other symptoms—such as swelling, numbness, tingling, fever, fatigue, and insomnia—accompany the pain. The causes of shoulder and arm pain include tendonitis, bursitis, arthritis, and gout. Such pain may also result from a reaction to medications such as penicillin, anti-anxiety drugs, and oral contraceptives. Whiplash injuries, common in auto accidents, can also cause shoulder and arm pain.
Shoulder and arm pain may be referred from some other region of the body, as when someone suffering a heart attack feels pain in the left shoulder and down the left arm. The pain may also be referred from nerves associated with the joints in the upper spine or “trigger points” in the back, which are particularly responsive to chiropractic spinal adjustments designed to treat such problems.
To get arm pain relief, it is important to first have some joint movement in the wrist and elbow. Circular motions of the hand are important to do frequently because it opens up the joint, bringing more synovial fluid to the area. Extending and flexing arm works well to open the elbow joint.
To massage the arm, you can lay it on a hard surface with the underside of the arm exposed. To release tension buildup from overuse or lack of use, apply pressure in circular motions with your hand or tool. This softens up the muscle, allowing it to relax.
Causes - Leg Pain
Legs are generally abused from standing or sitting for long periods of time. It is important to stretch, massage, and incorporate joint movement to get pain relief.
The knee is a complex joint influenced by muscles from above and below the joint. Knee instability is often compensated for by increased muscle tension in the leg muscles and shortening of the iliotibial tract (large connective tissue structure on the outside of the leg). Flexing and extending the knee frequently is great for the jointed area.
The distribution of leg pain can indicate the nerve portion affected. When located, the entire nerve tract needs to be searched above and below the impingement site for soft tissue restriction to provide soft tissue normalization around the nerves. Light stroking along the nerve tracks is very soothing.
To release the tightness and tension in the muscles, use deep pressure strokes and compressions to force the muscles to relax. It is hard to get to some of the deeper muscle layers with just your hand. The use of a tool will allow you to get the deep pressure you need to relax the muscles. Use deep strokes on the entire length of the muscle, and deeper compressions on the knotted areas.