Upper Crossed Syndrome (UCS) is a condition in which the muscles of the upper body, upper neck, shoulders, and chest are unequal. Some people may have mild symptoms in just one arm, or one elbow. In more severe cases the pain can be chronic and radiate throughout the neck, shoulders, and chest. UCS can disturb your night rest and interfere while doing your daily activities. Sometimes there is a limited ability to move the neck or shoulders in certain directions.
The most common cause of UCS is improper posture, where we leave our head to hang too much forwards and downwards, instead of standing up straight. Due to improper posture, our muscles aren’t put to work correctly, causing the weakening of the muscles as illustrated in the image above. This will finally result in a structural and muscular misconfiguration.
Causes for this improper posture include:

  • Looking down on screens (mobile, laptop, computer)
  • Looking down while walking
  • Driving for a long time
  • Slipping down while being seated

UCS will most likely cause tension the the muscles of the back, the chest, and the neck. This can ultimately cause an imbalance of the neck bone.
Treatments for UCS include:

  • Stretching the muscles by stretching exercise
  • Strengthening muscles that are weak or stretched
  • Posture adjustments
  • Massage, joint mobilization, myofascial release
  • Physical modalities

At Pain Away Clinic, here in Bangkok, we have experienced therapists who can diagnose and treat UCS. Physical therapy can speed up the recovery process, improve your posture, reduce further pain, and improve your quality of life. Feel free to contact us and make an appointment and inquire more information regarding UCS.

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