4 Reasons for Shoulder Pain
4 Reasons for Shoulder Pain

Are you unable to lift your hand above your head without feeling any discomfort? Well, this can be a symptom of a frozen shoulder or a rotator cuff injury or a dislocated shoulder. As per an estimate, about 67% of people in the country suffer from shoulder pain at some point over the course of their lives.

The shoulder is made up of bones secured in place by muscles, tendons, and ligaments. It is one of the most mobile joints. The well-combined joints and muscles help you perform all activities like allowing the shoulder to move freely in different directions, raising your arms over your head, throwing a baseball, or scratching your back. Joints are used in almost every day-to-day activity, and their regular wear and tear can create a lot of problems and pain.

Here are a few reasons for shoulder pain symptoms.

Rotator cuff tendonitis
There are several reasons for shoulder pain, and the most common of these is the rotator cuff. A recent study showcased two-thirds of people having shoulder pain had a rotator cuff problem. The rotator cuff is a tough sheath of tendons and ligaments that support the arm at the shoulder joint, keeping the ball of your upper arm bone centered in your shoulder socket, making it easy to raise and rotate your arm.

Performing some motions regularly can lead to inflammation of the rotator cuff tendons, also known as tendonitis, which can cause shoulder pain. With tendonitis, shoulder pain symptoms and weakness are often mild at first and barely noticeable when you move the joint; after a while, they can grow more severe and occur all the time. Change in activities to avoid provoking the pain can help heal the tendons.

The good news is that rotator cuff tendonitis can improve with time. Applying ice or heat and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) reduces the pain temporarily. Physiotherapy helps to keep your muscles moving and thus improvises weaker tissues.

Rotator cuff tears
Partial or complete tearing of shoulder tendons is highly possible, leading to shoulder pain. Repetitive motion or direct trauma like a fall can cause a muscle to tear. One can feel excruciating pain if the incident happens suddenly or is acute in nature. Shoulder pain, weakness in the joints and stiffness of a chronic tear worsens over time and hence, is not noticed by many or is somewhat ignored. The only possible remedy is to rest, apply ice or heat, and take NSAIDs.

Frozen shoulder
As the name suggests, one can experience severe stiffness and an inability to move his shoulder the way he usually would. Frozen shoulder is a result of thickened of inflamed connective tissue that lines your shoulder joint. There is no particular explanation for a frozen shoulder or why most middle-aged women are prone to its symptoms. Other factors that can be a cause of a frozen shoulder are:

  • 20% of people with diabetes develop a frozen shoulder.
  • People with thyroid problems or Parkinson’s disease are also vulnerable to frozen shoulder pain.

The easiest way to identify a frozen shoulder, as suggested by doctors, is to understand its three stages: “freezing,” “frozen,” and “thawing.” The ailment starts with a decrease in your range of motion and escalates without any warning signs. To reach the thawing stage, it takes approximately 18 months. However, some treatments can help you improvise a frozen shoulder and most people eventually get better without taking any treatment.

Shoulder bursitis
A person suffering from shoulder bursitis will experience deep, achy soreness that feels hot and swollen. The bursa is a fluid-filled sac that gives a smooth surface to muscles and bones to slide over. It helps reduce friction; however, if there is nothing left for smooth functioning, it causes pain in the shoulder. The condition can arise from excessive exercising or rigorous lifting work as the body responds by producing more fluid to the bursa.

Pain caused due to bursitis, the swelling or burning of the bursa, is typically on the outside of your shoulder and the intensity increases when the individual tries to put his arm above his head. Treatment includes physiotherapy and the same methods as those followed for frozen shoulder and rotator cuff.

Other reasons that can cause a rise in shoulder pain symptoms are labral tears, shoulder impingement, osteoarthritis, and dislocated shoulder. Most of the people avoid shoulder pain or opt for home remedies rather than consulting a doctor. However, we must understand that if these symptoms get aggravated, there can be severe consequences and one might end up spending more than what the initial expenses would have summed up to. Home remedies work miracles for some and can help heal the problem as well, but it is crucial to be aware of your overall health as one requires their hands and shoulder for almost every activity to be performed efficiently.

For relieving shoulder and neck pain, one can opt for topical pain-relief options such as Voltaren gel. Made by GSK, the gel uses a 1% concentration of diclofenac sodium solution that can provide temporary pain relief for people aged 18 and over.

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