Shoulder pain can be triggered by different things such as disease or injury to your shoulder joint. It affects the tendons, ligaments or bursae. It occurs around and in the joints. Within your body, the shoulders are the most moveable joints and when there is a high level of mobility, this can affect the joints thus making them unstable. The shoulder is comprised of muscles, tendons, ligaments, bones and cartilage. All these work together in order to provide stability and when one is affected, it results to shoulder pain. Inflammation of the tendons is one of the most likely causes of shoulder pain though there are other contributing factors such as bursitis and arthritis.
Causes of Shoulder Pain
The top most cause of shoulder pain is age. However, overuse of the muscles as a result of strenuous activities such as sports, occupation and recreational activities can also trigger shoulder pain. Injury is another common cause and participating in manual labor can also trigger the condition. Though there are different types of shoulder pain causes, the following are some of the most common ones.
- Frozen shoulder: This occurs as a result of swelling, tightening and thickening of flexible tissue which surrounds the shoulder joint. When this occurs, it leaves little space for the upper bone arm also known as humerus and thus, makes movement painful and stiff. Consequently, it becomes difficult for you to carry out day to day activities such as driving, dressing and sleeping comfortably.
- Rotator cuff disorder: Rotator cuff is comprised of a group of tendons and muscles. This surrounds your shoulder joint and is responsible for connecting tendons. When it is affected or injured in any way, it results to shoulder pain.
- Shoulder instability: This is another major cause of shoulder pain and it occurs when the shoulder joint ball part is not able to move correctly within the socket. Often, this varies and it might range from a clip or catching feeling within the shoulder. In other cases, it can be as a result of the ball coming out of the socket completely.
- Acromioclavicular joint disorders: This is the joint that connects the top part of your shoulder and it can cause shoulder pain as a result of stretching or tearing.
Symptoms of Shoulder Pain
In order to ensure that shoulder pain is addressed in time, it is ideal to have an idea of some of the symptoms you need to be on the lookout for. In this case, these can be highlighted as below.
- Pain: In this case, the pain is sharp and described as stabbing, dull and shock like. Because of the pain, you can also have a headache and it is important to explain what you feel when you visit your doctor in order to get a diagnosis and treatment that suits the ailment.
- Weakness: This is another major symptoms and it is as a result of the pain. For the purpose of ensuring that the problem is diagnosed correctly, it is important to differentiate between the pain caused by nerve damage and that caused by inflammation.
- Numbness: When the nerves are pinched, cut or bruised you will not be able to feel things in a normal manner and this also causes a tingling or sensation loss. It is similar to the same feeling you get when you fall asleep.
- Coolness: When you experiencing some coolness in the hand or arm, this is an indication that the veins or arteries have being injured and that the arm is not getting enough blood.
- Color changes: This is another major symptom that indicates shoulder pain. In this case, the shoulder turns white or blue and it is an indication that the shoulder’s veins or arteries are injured. Redness will also be seen and in this case, it is an indication that there is an inflammation or infection.
Shoulder Pain Home Remedies
The best way to deal with shoulder pain is to use home remedies. This is because most of these are natural and as such, they do not cause any side effects. In addition to this, they are also easy to use and do not require any special expertise to get administered. In this case, the following are some of the remedies you ought to try out. Remember, you should always consult with your physician in order to get a proper diagnosis and before trying to incorporate these home remedies and herbal remedies yourself!
- Try This– While sleeping, you need to take extra care in order to ensure you do not strain one part of the shoulder. Sleep on your side with either one or both of your knees brought up and the shoulder and head placed slightly forward in order to get rid of shoulder pain.
- Ointments and Balms– While ointments and balms might not heal shoulder pain, they provide relief and as such, you should consider the possibility of using the same.
- Oils- You should massage your back with oils. Certain oils such as lavender oil are known to offer immediate relief and as such, you should consider using the same frequently in order to get relief from shoulder pain.
- Cold and Hot Packs– Lie on your back and apply cold and hot packs on the affected areas. This will aid in alleviating the pain.
- Walk– Everyday, you should take a 10 minute walk at a slow pace. With time, you can increase this pace. This is essential because it relieves tension and improves blood circulation.
- Posture– You should practice superb posture whether working at a desk or sleeping. Also, make sure that you take breaks frequently in order to relieve your muscles and when sleeping, avoid use of pillows.
- Try This– Whenever you sit on a chair, make sure that the buttocks are at the back and your back must be well supported.
- Try This– Tilt your head to the left till it touches the shoulder and hold it there for 10 seconds. Repeat the exercise with the left side and repeat this exercise a couple of times everyday. It is one of the most essential home remedies and it will speed up your recovery from shoulder pain.
- Neck Exercises– You should carry out regular neck exercises as a remedy for shoulder pain. This is important for the simple reason it prevents cervical problems and also helps with the improvement of blood circulation.
- Calcium– You should eat a diet that is high in calcium
- Tea tree oil- The extracts from lavender tea tree can be used to relieve shoulder pain. This involves aromatherapy using the essential oil obtained from lavender tea tree. The process is similar massage therapy where light stimulation of the body muscles induces relaxation and relieves pain.
- Herbal tea- Herbal teas and their extracts have been used to improve blood circulation that eases shoulder and back muscles. Chamomile tea can be brewed or steeped or taken as a daily supplement to relieve from pain. Other herbal remedies for back pain are pepper, black haw, cramp bark, peppermint and ginger.
- Mint leaves- This is yet another way to reduce shoulder pain. The mint leaves should be crushed and then applied on the sore area to reduce the pain. For effective use, it should be made into a paste and lightly massage the shoulder. The muscles will relax as the mint leaves cools the skin which reduces the shoulder pain.
- White Willow Bark Extract- The extracts from white willow have been used for many years to remedy normal headaches, lower back pain, muscle aches and arthritis. Nowadays, it is available as 240 mg salicin extract. Though powerful, it should not be used with children less than five years.
- Devil’s Claw- The Devil’s claw is an indigenous African root that has been used for pain relief dating many hundred years. If mixed with water and boiled, it is consumed or used to wash and massage the affected areas. It reduces muscle pain and all kinds of inflammation.
- Arnica Montana- This is a kind of herb that is grounded and made into a cream or oily gel which is then rubbed on the affected area. Daily massage reduces shoulder pain. It has also been made into a pill that is taken slowly by dissolving with the saliva under the tongue.
Diet for Shoulder Pain
The importance of adhering to a proper diet in order to address shoulder pain is one that cannot be overlooked. The body needs minerals and vitamins to re-build injured parts and boost your immune system. In this case, you should consider having the following as part of your diet plan to deal with shoulder pain.
- Minerals and vitamins: These are essential because they provide numerous healing benefits to shoulder pain. They have some anti-inflammation properties. It also helps with cartilage regeneration which causes shoulder pain and boosts the immune system thus fighting toxins off and helping you enjoy overall good health apart from addressing your shoulder pain problems. Foods that are rich in vitamins E and C are an ideal choice.
- Fatty acids, glucosamine and antioxidants: You should also select a diet that is rich in these three in order to enjoy better health. These are important because they help reduce cases of inflammation and at the same time, they ensure that the pain is reduced. People suffering from shoulder pain are therefore advised to increase their intake of these three in order to get relief and enjoy better health.
- Drink lots of water: Water is essential for the body and it should be part of your diet for the purpose of getting relief from shoulder pain. By drinking a lot of water, you are able to maintain proper movement and this is essential for connective tissue. It is also the best way of healing soft tissue or muscle that might be damaged.
- As part of your diet, you should have organic foods. Avoid processed foods in order to recover from shoulder pain. This is because most processed foods don’t have the essential minerals and vitamins needed by the body in order to restore and strengthen the muscles that affect the shoulders.
By adhering to a proper diet, it is possible to enjoy better health and this makes it easy for you to deal with shoulder pain in an effective manner. Always, make sure that you adhere to a diet that has all the mentioned nutrients.
Prevention of Shoulder Pain
Shoulder pain can interfere with the manner in which you run your day to day activities. For this reason, it is important to look at some of the preventive measures you need to consider in order to enjoy better health. Some of these are as highlighted below.
- People with a past experience of shoulder pain should use ibuprofen and ice after exercising for the purpose of prevention a recurrence of the same.
- You should learn how to do stretch exercises properly for the purpose of strengthening your shoulder muscles and rotator cuff tendons.
- When indulging in activities that are sports related, make sure that you use the appropriate techniques in order to avoid damage to the shoulder blades. The exercises should not cause any painful experiences or strain. Make sure that you understand the exercises thoroughly before carrying them out in order to ensure you meet this end.
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