The Secret To Thawing Out A Frozen Shoulder

frozen shoulder

If you simply can’t raise your arm past your ears without excruciating pain, then there’s a good chance you might have frozen shoulder

Frozen Shoulder, also known as Adhesive capsulitis, is when the shoulder is painful and loses its full range of motion due to inflammation.

What causes a Frozen Shoulder?

The shoulder joint rests in a capsule like a ball and socket.  Ligaments secure the shoulder bones to each other. When the joint becomes inflamed, as from an injury, lack of exercise, or previous surgery, the shoulder bones become unable to move freely in the joint.

What are the common signs of a Frozen Shoulder?

Pain, lack of movement and stiffness when moving your arm are some clear signs of Frozen Shoulder.  Over time, sleeping is severely affected and it becomes quasi-impossible to perform activities such as reaching over your head or behind you.  Don’t try to self-diagnose your shoulder.  It’s best to go to your primary care and get an x-ray to fully assess the stiff, painful shoulder.

What are surgery-free ways to treat Frozen Shoulder?

#1   Cortizone Shots into the shoulder joint may offer short-term relief.

#2-3  Physical Therapy and Massage Therapy can be very effective in improving the range of motion of a frozen shoulder.

#4  Exercise can help keep the shoulder mobile and strong to avoid further stiffness.  Click here to see a list of recommended exercises for Frozen Shoulder.  Remember to consult your doctor prior to any exercise program.

#5  Hydrodilatation in the management of shoulder capsulitis. Hydrodilatation is a process where the fluid mixture of anti-inflammatory, local anaesthetic and sterile saline is injected into the shoulder joint to provide relief and a sensation of stretching.

How long can a shoulder stay frozen?

There are 3 phases to a frozen shoulder.  The freezing phase, the frozen phase, and the thawing out phase.

On average the freezing phase, which is characterized by constant pain and very limited range of motion, can last anywhere between 2 and 9 months or up to an entire year.

The frozen phase is when the shoulder stiffness gradually increases and this can go on for another 12 months.

The thawing-out phase is a sign of a road to recovery, with the shoulder functionality improving and the pain easing up. This improvement can take between 12 to 24 months.   For approximately 80% of frozen shoulder patients, the pain disappears and their range of motion returns, however, some will experience permanently restricted range of motion. This loss of motion does not usually cause any long-term problems.

 

Source: UK Huffington Post

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