A columnist for Fibromyalgia News Today recently took to social media to see if any other fibromyalgia sufferers were dealing with joint pain. The result was that she discovered many were suffering from conditions such as frozen shoulder, TMJ dysfunction, and bursitis of the hip, shoulder, and elbow. What is the connection between fibromyalgia, these particular joint disorders, and a small bone at the base of the skull?
The Atlas, Fibromyalgia, and Joint Pain
At the base of the skull, where the spinal cord meets the brainstem, is the Atlas (C1 vertebra). This vital setting – filled with nerves that extend to the ends of the body, blood vessels that carry blood to the brain, and other soft tissue – is often the location of a specific misalignment that can have far reaching effects. How is fibromyalgia potentially related to an Atlas subluxation?
When the C1 is out of place, it can affect blood flow to the brain. Some fibromyalgia research has observed blood flow changes to the parts of the brain that sense pain and provide an emotional response to pain in patients. Thus, correcting the blood flow problem may be the first step in getting help.
Interestingly, an atlas misalignment can also affect the shoulder, elbow, hip, and jaw. Many patients who have problems in these particular joints have sought upper cervical chiropractic care to find relief. This only helps to solidify the idea that fibromyalgia is connected to an upper cervical misalignment.
What Is Upper Cervical Chiropractic?
Upper cervical chiropractic involves the use of a low force adjustment (none of that “popping” or “cracking”) to set the C1 and C2 in place. This, in turn, causes the rest of the spine to realign naturally. As a result, pressure may be removed from nerves in the shoulders, hips, and jaw that were caused by the original misalignment. Proper blood flow to the brain can be restored. Therefore, many patients feel immediate benefits, but also continue to feel better over time as long lasting adjustments give the body time to heal naturally.