6 Ways to Help Chronic Shoulder Pain

Man with shoulder painMany conditions can lead to chronic shoulder pain including:

  • arthritis
  • bursitis
  • shoulder strain
  • injury
  • tendonitis

This common ailment affects people of all ages and activity levels. No one likes dealing with pain that can affect your quality of life and your ability to maintain your current activity level. What can you do when you’re experiencing shoulder pain that won’t go away?

1. Ice

When you have to manage chronic shoulder pain, you can start with icing the affected area. Apply a cold pack for up to 20 minutes as often as five times daily. This process will help calm inflammation in your shoulder and help alleviate your pain.

2. Compression

Another technique you can try at home for shoulder pain is compression. Wrap your shoulder in an ACE bandage or regular bandage. The wrap should be snug, but not too tight. If you begin to feel tingling or numbness in your fingers or arm, release some of the pressure from the bandage.

3. Medication for chronic shoulder pain

When you are experiencing shoulder pain, your first choice of medication should be an over-the-counter anti-inflammatory such as Ibuprofen, Naproxen, or aspirin. If this type of medicine is ineffective, you can talk to your doctor about a stronger pain medication or a muscle relaxant. Both of these require a prescription.

4. Rest

Your shoulder pain may be due to over exertion. Take some time to rest your shoulder. This can be accomplished by changing your activity level or by wearing a sling to support your shoulder while it heals. Continue to move your shoulder gently until the pain subsides.

5. Exercises and stretches for chronic shoulder pain

Stretching and exercising your shoulder can help speed healing and prevent further injury when done properly. It is best to consult a physical therapist when rehabilitating from a shoulder injury. The physical therapists at Colorado Springs Orthopaedic Group can help.

6. Specialists for chronic shoulder pain

When home treatment for your chronic shoulder pain hasn’t worked, it’s time to see a specialist. You should visit a doctor right away if you experience any of the following:

  • Inability to raise your arm
  • Severe pain that doesn’t subside with home treatment
  • Persistent weakness in your shoulder, arm or hand

The Express Care Clinic at Colorado Springs Orthopaedic Group is there when you need immediate treatment. We are also available for regular office visits. Call today to schedule an appointment for help with your shoulder pain.

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