Home Remedies For Shoulder Pain
Shoulder pain is one of the most common types of aches people experience in their lifetime. It can happen from overexertion, sudden movements, or even carrying heavy objects. The good news is that shoulder pain usually goes away within a week or two. Here are some home remedies you can try to relieve the discomfort associated with shoulder pain.
First, let’s start by looking at what causes shoulder pain in the first place. Your shoulders have three bones – the clavicle (collarbone), scapula (shoulder blade), and humerus (upper arm bone). These bones are connected together by muscles, ligaments, and tendons. When they move together, the result is often painful. This occurs when there is an injury to the joint between the upper arm bone and the collarbone; it also happens if the rotator cuff muscle tears or becomes inflamed. Other sources of shoulder pain include arthritis, bursitis, tendonitis, and rheumatism.
Next, we’ll look at how to treat these different conditions. First up, here are some home remedies to ease the symptoms of a strained shoulder:
Take aspirin or other anti-inflammatory medications such as Advil or Motrin. However, avoid taking them too long before surgery or during pregnancy. Ibuprofen is another popular over-the-counter drug used to relieve pain and swelling caused by arthritis and sports injuries. Aspirin should be taken only when directed by a physician because it has been found to interfere with blood clotting. In addition, do not take more than the maximum amount of daily recommended dose of any medication without consulting a doctor.
Do hot compresses. You can make a compress out of a clean towel by wrapping it around your shoulder several times until it reaches your elbow. Then apply heat by holding the towel above the affected area for about 30 seconds. Repeat this procedure every 20 minutes or so throughout the day. If your shoulder feels numb, use a heating pad instead.
Wrap a damp cloth or bandage soaked in alcohol around your shoulder. Change the packings frequently. Apply similar packs to the back of your neck, behind your ears, and under your armpits. These areas will provide additional relief.
Use a foam roller. To use a foam roller, lie down on your stomach and put a rolled up towel underneath your shoulders and chest. Roll the roller slowly across the front, sides, and back of your shoulders and upper trapezius. Hold onto each end of the roller and gently roll your body forward and backward 10 to 15 times per session. Afterward, stretch your arms overhead.
If you’re suffering from osteoarthritis, seek medical attention. The condition is serious and must be treated properly by a qualified health care professional.
Now, let’s talk about treating various types of conditions that cause shoulder pain:
Bursitis involves inflammation of fluid sacs called bursa located just below the skin and lining of the joints. Bursitis affects both the hip and shoulder but mostly the latter. Symptoms include sharp stabbing pains, redness, tenderness, limited range of motion, and decreased strength. Treatment includes rest, physical therapy, warm compresses, ice, and elevation of the injured part. Over-the-counter drugs such as ibuprofen and naproxen sodium may also help relieve pain and swelling. Soaking in warm water followed by applying ice packs may work best. Avoid stretching or moving the affected area, especially after icing. Consult with your doctor immediately if you develop fever, chills, severe pain, or see signs of infection.
Rotator cuff tear is when the supraspinatus muscle separates from its attachment at the top of the spine. The resulting gap allows the shoulder blade to slip downward and inward, putting abnormal stress on the attached tendons. Repairing a torn rotator cuff requires surgical intervention. There are many options available including sutures, grafts, anchors, allografts, autografts, and implants. Most doctors recommend repairing a complete tear rather than simply patching holes.
Tendonitis refers to inflammation of the tissues that attach muscles to bone. It results from repetitive strain, lack of movement, or trauma. People who suffer from chronic tendonitis often exhibit stiffness, soreness, weakness, and loss of flexibility. Treatments include resting, physical therapy, and steroid injections. Physical therapy focuses on range of motion exercises and strengthening the surrounding muscles. Steroid injections (triamcinolone) are administered through a needle into the tissue surrounding the injured area. They temporarily reduce inflammation and improve healing. Surgery is rarely required unless the problem persists for months.
Arthritis is a term applied to more than 100 types of diseases characterized by inflammation, deformity, and disability. Arthritis is the leading cause of disability among older adults. It is estimated that nearly 50 percent of adults aged 60 years or older suffer from arthritis.
Rheumatic fever develops when bacteria enter the bloodstream causing inflammation. Its effects vary according to age. Infants younger than six months old usually recover completely. Older children and young adults may suffer permanent damage to valves in the heart and/or arteries. Adults may develop stiff joints, swollen knuckles, enlarged hearts, and weakened immune systems. Rheumatic fever can lead to a number of complications including:
* Heart valve disease
* Septicemia (blood poisoning)
* Subcutaneous nodules (swelling beneath the skin)
* Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE)
* Endocarditis (inflammation of the inner membrane of the heart)
* Cardiomyopathy (heart muscle disease)
* Pericarditis (inflammation of the fibrous sheath surrounding the heart)
Seek medical attention if any of the following occur:
* Fever lasting longer than 7 days
* Swollen glands
* Sore throat
* Cough producing mucus
* Chest pain
* Shortness of breath
* Red streaks under the eyes
* Bluish spots on the nails
* Excessive tiredness
* Loss of appetite
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