uneven shoulders chiropractor

When the shoulders are not even, one looks higher than the other. It can happen due to a variety of structural or postural reasons. Things might become more complicated than they look. This condition may be painful, affect your posture, and be a sign of more serious musculoskeletal imbalances.

It is not unknown that chiropractic care is a great solution for pain-related issues. But can a chiropractor fix uneven shoulders? Yes, chiropractors can help by fixing subluxations or other issues with the spine that may be to blame.

In this article, we will look at how chiropractors do the job of fixing uneven shoulders. We will also discuss the causes, symptoms, and impact of the condition. Keep reading to learn more.

The Most Common Causes of Uneven Shoulders

A number of causes can be responsible for uneven shoulders. Before going deep into the solutions and impact, let’s discuss them for a better understanding.

  • Poor Posture

If your posture is bad, the difference in shoulder height between your right and left sides could be small or large.

Do not forget that bad posture can also cause rounded shoulders. This condition can make the muscles in the shoulder area tight and make the left shoulder lower than the right shoulder.

  • Scoliosis

Scoliosis is when the spine bends to the side. The spine naturally curves in different ways, and when seen from behind, the spine looks straight. Kids and teens with scoliosis develop spine curves that are not supposed to be there, such as an S- or C-shaped curve.

Scoliosis comes in two main types:

  1. Functional
  2. Structural

People who have structural scoliosis have bones that have changed shape to fit their position. On the other hand, bad posture can lead to functional scoliosis, but both can cause shoulders to be uneven.

  • Muscle Imbalances

If one muscle in a group is bigger, stronger, or different in any other way, it can throw off the balance of the muscles. Such an imbalance can make it hard to move or function normally.

Muscle imbalances can happen naturally or because of sports or other physical activities, bad posture, or other issues. Shoulder blades on the same side can be out of place if a shoulder muscle is not sitting right.

  • Nerve Damage

Damaged or sick nerves that control shoulder muscles can make one shoulder sit higher or lower than the other. This is especially true for cranial nerve XI.

Injuries or neurological conditions can damage nerves. Some of these conditions are:

  • Cerebral palsy
  • Spina bifida
  • Spinal muscular atrophy
  • Spinal cord injury
  • Muscular dystrophy
  • A pinched nerve
  • Lifestyle or Bad Habits

People who do not move around much are more likely to have uneven shoulders. You may also be at risk if you sleep on your side or in a bad position. Besides, if you hold your body in bad ways while you are awake, you can develop shoulder unevenness.

  • Other Causes

Apart from the above-mentioned ones, some other causes can also be the culprit behind an uneven shoulder, such as:

  • Shoulder joint or nearby muscle trauma or injury
  • Degenerative conditions, like arthritis, can cause changes in the shoulder joint
  • An unleveled pelvis

can a chiropractor fix uneven shoulders

Symptoms of Uneven Shoulders

We have already known that scoliosis can cause uneven shoulders. If scoliosis is the reason, then you can also encounter other signs, such as:

On the other hand, when your pelvis is not level, you may experience the following symptoms:

  • Imbalanced walking
  • Muscle imbalances
  • Decreased back mobility
  • Lower back or hip pain

The Impact of Uneven Shoulders

Uneven shoulders can have a big effect on your appearance as well as your daily life and health as a whole. Let’s look at how it can impact you in the short-term as well as the long-term-

  • Short-term impact: The short-term impacts of this condition include
    • Localized pain
    • Discomfort that worsens during specific tasks, like desk jobs
    • A general feeling of imbalance that affects mood concentration and even leads to headaches or neck pain
  • Long-term impact: If you do not fix uneven shoulders, your posture will be worse, and your muscles and joints will be under more stress. This can lead to
    • Chronic pain conditions
    • An elevated possibility of developing arthritis in the affected area
    • A higher risk of injuries

How Can a Chiropractor Fix Uneven Shoulders?

Chiropractic care focuses on how the spine and nervous system work together to get things back in the right place.

Chiropractors realign the spine by making adjustments with their hands. They can fix subluxations or other problems with the spine that may be causing the shoulders to be uneven.

Here is a breakdown of the entire process:

  • Assessment and Diagnosis

Before making any adjustments, a chiropractor will carefully check out your shoulders to find out why they are not level. This assessment involves

  • Checking out your posture
  • Conducting spinal exams
  • Possibly sending you for an X-ray
  • Techniques

A chiropractor may use different techniques depending on the original problem, such as

  • Manual adjustments
  • Rehabilitation exercises
  • Muscle techniques
  • Postural advice

Different levels of spinal curvature can cause different structural problems, like scoliosis. A chiropractor might combine manual adjustments and rehabilitation exercises in such cases.

rounded shoulders chiropractor

Chiropractors will use a mix of manual adjustments to fix posture issues like leaning to one side. Alongside, they will give advice on posture, lifestyle, and exercises.

A chiropractor often includes stretches and exercises in their treatment plans. These exercises help the muscles around the shoulders and spine get stronger and more balanced.

Some of the exercises and stretches include:

  • Standing Row: The affected shoulder is extended while facing a resistance band looped on a stable fixture in this exercise. Keeping the back flat is a must.
  • Rotation Exercises: Circular motions help to maintain healthy shoulder function. Exercises involving rotations rectify uneven shoulders using bands attached to fixtures.
  • Shoulder Raises: It’s done by straightening back and keeping arms at standard pose. Then, the shoulders are taken to the ear and squeezed hard. This pose is held briefly and released.
  • Reverse Prayer Pose: As the name suggests, it’s done by putting palms behind the back and fingers facing down. Next, the chest and shoulders are straightened. Afterward, the joined hands are rotated to face the ceiling. This pose is held briefly before relaxing.
  • Cross-Arm Stretch: For this stretch, the affected arm is kept straight and crosses the body. Then, the palm from the unaffected side is used to pull the treatment side’s upper arm across the body. It’s released after 30 seconds.
  • Posture Education

Adjustments to how you sit, stand, and move can help chiropractic care work better to fix uneven shoulders. Hence, chiropractors will also help you maintain good posture while doing everyday things.

How to Sleep with Uneven Shoulders

If you have uneven shoulders, sleeping in an uncomfortable position can make the pain worse. So, it is very important to get enough rest while the scapular stabilizes. While you sleep, support the arm on the hurt side with a pillow, blanket, or towel.

Home Remedies to Fix Uneven Shoulders

Uneven shoulders can be a tricky issue and require immediate attention. Getting a highly professional and experienced chiropractor’s help is the best option.

Nevertheless, there are a few easy things you can try at home to make your shoulders even out. These methods usually work better when the issue is only with muscles or tissues (tension, injury, tendonitis, etc.) rather than bones. Here are some tips to follow:

  • Rest properly to loosen up tense muscles and knots that might be making things uneven.
  • Take a hot bath. It is a great way to ease the stress and tension that may come with uneven shoulders.
  • Use cold compresses and heating pads to reduce tension and inflammation. This makes it easier to work on muscles and promotes blood flow and healing.


Uneven shoulders can have a great impact on the overall well-being of a person. The causes of uneven shoulders include bad posture, nerve damage, scoliosis, etc. With chiropractic treatments, this painful situation can be easily fixed.

A chiropractor applies several adjustments to fix this after diagnosing the root cause. Several exercise and stretching techniques can also make the progression faster.

At The Brost Clinic, we make treating imbalanced shoulders simple with excellent chiropractors. The quality of our techniques is unmatched. If you or your loved one is suffering from the discomfort of an uneven shoulder, don’t wait any longer. Take an appointment today and let us help.

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