The musculoskeletal system always functions as a whole. Dysfunction in one part of the body might affect the rest of the body.
We can all affect the condition of our musculoskeletal system with our lifestyle and choices. Our bodies are designed to move, and movement can really be a “medicine”. However, we can’t always fix the problems ourselves, which is when we need another person to fix the imbalances for us.
Over a million of Finns have a musculoskeletal disorder. For adults the most common problems are disorders in the small of the back, neck and shoulders and osteoarthritis. Amongst the retired more common problems are osteoarthritis in the knees and hip and osteoporosis.
Musculoskeletal disorders have become expensive for society in terms of medical treatments, sick days from work and disabilities. All in all the disorders and the following pain affect the quality of life.
Pain is the most common symptom of these disorders. It might be acute, such as lumbago, or chronic, such as back pain or osteoarthritis.
The symptoms should be traced to the problem before the disorder becomes chronic.
One of the most common musculoskeletal disorders causing chest pain is Thoracic Outlet Syndrome or TOS. It is possibly followed by dysfunctional mobility in the upper ribs. Symptoms of TOS are pain or numbness in the shoulders or radiating pain in the front of the chest, shoulder blades and upper limbs. Usually the symptoms come up after burdening the upper limbs, especially when keeping the arms elevated. Degenerated cervical vertebrae may also cause radiating pain in the thoracic spine and upper limbs, sometimes resembling heartburn. However, the symptoms have got nothing to do with stress or strain, but specific movements of the cervical vertebrae.
Back pain is used to describe the pain located in the backside, lower back syndrome being the most common. Behind the syndrome there are usually locked SI-joints and a dislocated pelvis, which creates tension on the spine, and problems compensating the tension, such as scoliosis, spinal dish herniation (slipped disc), and degeneration in intervertebral discs and vertebrae.
The pain in the chest can be connected to the stiffness of the chest, which might be followed by difficulty in breathing. These symptoms might sometimes be falsely diagnosed as heart and lung problems.
Slow degeneration and thinning of the joint cartilage is called osteoarthritis. It can be found in several joints, usually in the knees, hips, spine, metatarsophalangeal joint (stem joint) of the big toe and top joints of the fingers.
Joints degenerate naturally with age, but in the background of premature or fast degeneration there might be a dislocated joint. Joint cartilage can also be damaged through an imbalance in the joints caused by injury, heavy work or sporting activities. A sports injury is a common cause for osteoarthritis amongst young people.
Even though the degenerated cartilage can’t be replaced, returning the joint to its natural mobility can ease the pain and bring the metabolism back to normal.