People have a tendency to assume that the location of their pain is the location of the problem. This makes sense if your hand hurts after slamming it in the car door or if you twisted your ankle and now it hurts.
Other times, the pain is coming from a source far from the location of the pain. Just today we had a patient in the office that has pain in her wrists. Sometimes she just has numbness or tingling but other times she has cramping or a dull achy pain in just her ring and pinky finger. She complained of stiff fingers and assumed she had arthritis in their hands when in reality, she had irritated a nerve that starts in her neck and ends in her fingers. She felt relief as soon as we adjusted her neck and we didn’t even have to touch her fingers! The chiropractic adjustment helped the nerve that controls her fingers to function better and that made the pain go away.
All of the nerves of the arms actually come from the neck and all of the nerves of the legs originate in the lower back. Those nerves can refer pain from their source all the way down to your toes or fingers!
When someone has pain in their arm or jaw from a heart attack, we don’t try to fix the arm- we go for the heart! The “heart” of the problem may be the nerves of the neck or the lower back. The next time you have pain in your hands, wrists, fingers, or even your toes, come see us so we can get at the root of the problem.