Is Arm Pain Getting On Your Nerves?

  • Posted On: March 18th, 2023
  • Posted In: Health Tips

  • Read Time: 3 Mins

Nerve Flossing - Exercises For Arm Pain

It is common for chiropractors to see people who have pain travelling down their arm, whether it be in the form of shooting pains or pins and needles. A common cause of this is when the nerves that travel down the arm get trapped and irritated as a result, this is called a nerve entrapment. The three main nerves that travel down the arm are:

  1. The median nerve;
  2. The ulnar nerve; and
  3. The radial nerve.

All three of these nerves originate from the spine in the neck and have a specific pain pattern which will be explored in more detail later.

Nerves innervate muscles and skin, they also play other roles such as telling the brain where a joint is in space and if something is wrong in the form of pain. When a nerve entrapment occurs pain, weakness, and numbness can be felt along the course of the nerve that has become trapped. A common entrapment site for nerves are from discs in the spine if they bulge outwards and press on a nerve.


This is where nerve flossing can be useful. It is an exercise that helps get the nerve moving, which can reduce irritation on the nerve and therefore reduce pain.


 

This is done by bringing the nerve to tension,then loosening it off, and repeating. Below are exercises for each nerve of the arm with the specific pain pattern of which that nerve produces if trapped:

 

The Median Nerve

This nerve can cause pain down the front of the arm and into the middle and index finger. It is also the nerve that gets trapped at the wrist in a common condition called 'carpal tunnel syndrome.' Below are the movements to floss this nerve.

 

The Ulnar Nerve

This nerve can cause pain travelling down the inside of the arm and into the little finger. It is commonly mistaken for the pain that is caused if we hurt our "funny bone" when we bang our elbow!

 

The Radial Nerve

This nerve can cause pain down the back of the arm, forearm and into the back of the hand and fingers. Pain is often felt in these regions if a nerve entrapment occurs from a bulging disc at the bottom of the neck.

 

 

Let us know how you get on with these exercises!

 

Daniel Gentles is fully registered with the General Chiropractic Council and a member of the British Chiropractic Association and Royal College of Chiropractors.