Treatment for shoulder pain – Our bodies experience various forms of stress every day. Physical, mental, and emotional stress can wreak havoc on the body and cause all sorts of health conditions, including chronic pain, breathing problems, digestive problems, and sleep disorders.
One of the most common pain problems caused by stress is shoulder pain. While it may sound pretty innocuous, shoulder pain is debilitating, affecting everyday life more than we think.
The condition affects about a quarter of the population, according to a 2018 South Australia Health Study.
Here, we outline osteopathy can treat issues surrounding shoulder pain and explore how to use them for pain relief.
What Is Shoulder Pain?
Shoulder pain is any pain or discomfort that occurs in and around the shoulder area.
The shoulder is a flexible ball-and-socket joint connecting the arm to the chest and is one of the most mobile parts of the body.
The primary shoulder joint – the glenohumeral – fits into the shoulder blade bone and acts as a socket, giving the shoulder a wide range of movement. Inside this capsule is the synovium, which produces lubrication fluid that moistens the joint and keeps the cartilage healthy.
Above the shoulder is a smaller joint known as the acromioclavicular (AC) joint. This joint helps the bigger shoulder joint below move when someone lifts, throws, or raises the arm.
If any of these joints or muscles get stressed, shoulder pain can occur. Common causes of shoulder pain include:
- Arthritic inflammation
- Bad posture
- High impact or contact sports
- Muscle from wear and tear or traumatic injury, e.g., dislocation
Shoulder pain can be chronic and debilitating and will require osteopathy and other professional treatments to heal.
Symptoms of Shoulder Pain
Shoulder pain symptoms include sharp or shooting pain in and around the shoulder joint. It can also present as a dull ache between the neck and the tip of the shoulder.
Pain and stiffness in the shoulder joint typically occur whenever there is lifting or arm movement. It is also common for patients to experience shoulder pain in the neck and upper back area.
Shoulder pain can occur gradually or in an instant. This pain can also spread into the arm and hand, with characteristic numbness or tingling.
Osteopathy Treatment for Shoulder Pain
Osteopathy is a holistic treatment that uses gentle, hands-on treatment to heal spinal, muscle, and soft tissue pain.
Osteopathy treatment for shoulder pain uses various techniques to alleviate tendon and muscle tension on the AC joint. Osteopaths match the pressure of muscle manipulation and soft tissue massage to a patient’s pain tolerance.
They can also work out a comprehensive recovery and treatment for shoulder pain plan that can help you heal in between appointments.
Some common osteopathy treatments for shoulder pain include:
If you have shoulder pain due to an injury, rest is an essential part of the healing process.
Returning to activity too quickly can cause more pain and hinder recovery. Your local osteopath will advise you on the types of activities you can do to rehabilitate your shoulder injury.
Cold or Heat Therapy
Cold therapy is an ideal treatment if your shoulder injury is recent. Applying an ice pack within the first 24-72 hours of the injury for 15-20 minutes can alleviate any pain, inflammation, or swelling.
For shoulder pain without bruising or swelling, applying a heat pack 72 hours after the injury can reduce muscle tension and discomfort.
Gentle Stretching Exercises
If you are experiencing mild shoulder tension, stretching exercises release any stiffness and improve your joint mobility.
This particular osteopathy treatment for shoulder pain is ideal for relaxing your shoulder muscles and tendons and restoring movement.
Resistance Band Training
Resistance band training is a simple exercise for your shoulders.
Osteopaths prescribe this exercise to heal muscle injuries and slowly rebuild shoulder strength. This safe and low-impact also allows you to focus on specific areas of your body that need healing, improving stability and flexibility, reducing pain, and boosting muscle function.
These exercises use a portable resistance band that is inexpensive and easy to use, so you can easily fit them into your fitness routine.
Standard exercises that can heal shoulder injuries using resistance bands include:
- Band Pull-Apart – Strengthens the rear shoulders and upper back
- Front Raise – Strengthens shoulders and promotes proper posture
- Lateral Raise – Improves shoulder mobility by targeting the shoulders, upper back, and core muscles
- Reverse Fly – Strengthens the shoulders, upper back, and upper arms
- Standing Row – Targets the lats, middle, and lower trapezius
Discontinue resistance band training if you experience any discomfort or pain, especially if you’re healing from a shoulder injury, and contact your osteopath for further guidance.
How to Seek Help for Shoulder Concerns
Don’t let shoulder pain ruin your quality of life.
If your shoulder pain is not severe, you can explore the above treatments at home to relieve pain and stiffness. If 7-10 days of self-treatment doesn’t alleviate the pain, you should see your doctor or local osteopath as soon as possible to seek treatment.
Book your osteopathy appointment with OsteoCare Craigieburn today to explore whole-body, osteopath treatments and coping strategies for shoulder pain.
Call 1800 067 836 or contact us online today for an in-depth consultation.