When a part of our body aches, it’s understandable to simply suspect that you’ve sustained a minor injury. But what if nothing turns up upon examination? Could something else be causing the mysterious pain?

Actually, yes. Because the spine essentially serves as the information superhighway of the entire body, misaligned vertebrae can disrupt nerve signals. And when that happens, you might feel pain in a seemingly unrelated part of your body. It’s called “referred pain”, and it’s a very real phenomenon.

Pain essentially serves as a warning signal that something is wrong, somewhere in your body. Our nerves all connect and communicate with one another, and then the brain interprets those signals. But if a signal gets scrambled on the way to the brain, it can be interpreted (wrongly) as pain in the wrong part of your body.

This is why eating very cold ice cream can result in a headache, even though the ice cream is in your mouth. Referred pain can show up as a dull ache or a sharp burning sensation. It will be felt in a part of the body that doesn’t make sense, because that part isn’t sick or injured.

Because all of our nerve messages run through the spine on their way to the brain (or vice versa), a misalignment or inflamed tissue within the spine can disrupt the message. This can cause you to feel pain in the wrong place. And sometimes referred pain shows up as more of a numbness or tingling. Muscle weakness, with no other logical explanation, can also be due to referred pain.

And so, chiropractic treatment for referred pain will revolve around treating the source of the problem. We check you for misalignments of the spine and address any inflamed tissues that could be contributing to the problem.

If you suffer any mysterious pain that doesn’t quite make sense, give us a call to schedule an appointment. The problem might lie within your spine, and we could resolve the issues with a few simple chiropractic adjustments.