Seeing a Chiropractor for Shoulder Pain Can Help Relieve Pain
Your shoulder is composed of several joints, muscles, and tendons. The ball-and-socket joint allows you to have a great range of motion, but it comes at the expense of stability. The shoulder joint gets dislocated more often than any other joint in the body. And repeated stress from the way you use your shoulders can lead to several different types of injuries.
Types of Shoulder Pain
Because the shoulder joint is so complex, there are a variety of things that could be causing shoulder pain. A few examples are:
Frozen shoulder is also known as adhesive capsulitis, and the exact reason why this occurs is unknown. It occurs more commonly in people with diabetes or people who have not had any amount of physical activity in the affected shoulder for a long period of time. The symptoms of frozen shoulder include:
- Achy pain in shoulder
- Shoulder stiffness
- Trouble sleeping
There are three stages with this kind of shoulder pain.
- The Freezing Stage: This is how symptoms begin, moving your shoulder causes pain and your shoulder’s range of motion starts to get more limited.
- The Frozen Stage: Your shoulder will start to get stiffer, and using it will become more difficult, though the pain is usually lessened.
- The Thawing Stage: Your range of motion in your shoulder will begin to improve gradually.
This type of shoulder pain usually resolves itself within one to three years, but there are range-of-motion exercises that can help treat it as well.
Rotator Cuff Injuries
Rotator cuff injuries can be caused by wearing down the rotator cuff tendons over time or suddenly from a traumatic event. Activities that place a tremendous amount of force or strain on the shoulder can cause an immediate tear. With aging, or overuse of the shoulders over time, the rotator cuff degenerates, forming small tears in the rotator cuff, making it weaker and more prone to larger tears. Symptoms of a rotator cuff injury include:
- Shoulder pain
- Loss of range of motion
Rest and rehabilitation are usually an effective method for treating this type of injury.
Shoulder bursitis is most often caused by repetitive motions, especially those that go overhead. Golfers and baseball players are diagnosed with shoulder bursitis frequently, but physical traumas can also cause shoulder bursitis as well. Those suffering from shoulder bursitis may experience:
- Pain on contact
- Restricted range of motion due to pain
- Swelling and redness around the shoulder joint
If a fever is present, immediate care should be sought out as it could mean an infection has begun in the bursa. After diagnosis, shoulder bursitis can be treated with at home treatments and exercises. These can help ease symptoms and treat pain as well as inflammation.
Shoulder misalignment is usually caused by direct shoulder trauma, such as a fall, automobile accident, sports injury, or poor lifting habits. This can also cause a shoulder subluxation, which is a type of dislocation, but the ball and socket are not fully separated, causing one joint to be misaligned. While harder to detect than a full dislocation, there are a few signs to look for.
- The partially dislocated humerus is visible underneath the skin
- Numbness or tingling down the arm
- Difficulty moving the joint
- Visibly deformed or out-of-place shoulder
- Clicking or catching sensation while performing daily tasks
Treatment includes repositioning the humerus back into the socket and ensuring that it stays in place. Strengthening exercises may be able to increase stability after the misalignment is addressed.