Some people call it a tingling pain. Others describe it as arm numbness. If and when your arm should feel weird, and you’re at the point where you’re dropping things because of it, you might have a serious problem.

Nerves and blood vessels run through the arm. When they’re impacted, for whatever reason, then you get arm numbness. Did you know that arm numbness might actually be starting in your neck? Your neck is made up of seven spinal bones. These stack together in a forward, bow-like curve. There are discs (cushions) in between the bones. Normally, the bones and discs are well-lubricated and functional in such a way that you live a relatively pain-free life. However, sometimes discs weaken and when that happens, a bulge can occur. This bulge irritates a nerve. As you know, nerves are like highways inside your body. They may run from your head to your toes, and anywhere along the way where there’s a roadblock there’s pain.

So, arm numbness might be originating in your neck. Or the nerves that go between the muscles that connect the neck to your ribs could be being impacted, and this is called “thoracic outlet syndrome.” A spinal exam can help pinpoint where the numbness is coming from, and then a chiropractor is able to treat the problem accordingly.

A chiropractor’s treatment to help relieve you of arm numbness will likely include stretching tight muscles, strengthening weak ones, using hand manipulation to reduce joint swelling, and making needed adjustments to get blood flowing better throughout the body.

If you have arm numbness, here are some things to try at home… Try shrugging your shoulders up, back and down. Do this slowly, concentrating on stretching the muscles involved. Next, stretch your chest muscles by holding your arms straight out, palms down. Bring your arms up over your head such that your arms are pointing backwards. This should help stretch your chest muscles. Finally, lean your head side to side, with your chin tucked into your neck. Then do the same with your neck raised toward the sky. These are some exercises that may prove helpful in relieving arm numbness and other problems.