You wake up in the morning, perhaps stretch a little, brush your teeth, brush your hair and start the day. You lift your arm and use your shoulder – the most mobile joint in the body, many times throughout the day, without even thinking about it… until one day, you experience discomfort or pain. For some, severe shoulder pain may result.
Most people will experience a shoulder issue at some point during their lives. It affects both men and women of all ages. According to the CDC, over 1.2 million people – not just serious athletes or seniors, visit the emergency room every year due to severe shoulder pain!
Here at The AIMS Clinic, we find that certain occupations are associated with severe shoulder pain – cashiers, hairstylists, painters, construction workers, keyboard operators and welders, to name a few.
Additionally, 25% of those over age 50 are believed to have rotator cuff problems – many of which may not be symptomatic.
Should You Seek Care For Your Shoulder Pain?
Shoulder pain has various levels of severity. Pain may be a mild ache between the shoulder blades to a sharp pain at the point of the shoulder. Other symptoms of concern include:
- Pain that lasts more than a few days.
- Pain that wakes you up at night.
- Numbness or tingling down the arm.
- Movement in the shoulder or arm is restricted.
- A clicking or popping sound.
- Difficulty sleeping or resting on your shoulder.
- Any swelling, redness or warmth on the shoulder may be sign of an infection.
Unfortunately, some people who experience shoulder pain chose to ignore their symptoms. Pain and lack of sleep, along with the inability to do daily activities can result in fatigue, feeling grumpy and/or depressed! At The AIMS Clinic, we believe the sooner you seek care, the more likely conservative treatments – such as chiropractic, physical therapy and acupuncture can help. An early diagnosis and care can often prevent the pain from escalating to severe shoulder pain.
Shoulder Injuries Are Not The Only Cause Of Pain!
A slip-and-fall, auto accident or sports injury bring many people to our Center. However, there are additional factors or causes of shoulder pain:
- Poor posture while walking, exercising, resting, lifting, carrying and pushing. The list must also include using electronic devices of all kinds.
- Repetitive or overuse activities or movements – such as swimming, dancing or high-impact contact sports.
- Vibration of machine tools.
- Muscle imbalances and/or weakness.
- Pinched nerve (cervical radiculopathy)
- Neck stiffness or instability.
- Stiffness of the thoracic spine.
- Poor breathing skills.
- Existing health concerns, such as arthritis.
If you have sustained shoulder injuries or relate to any of the factors above, an evaluation with our Team of Experts is vital. Fortunately, we have helped thousands of patients who suffered with various degrees of shoulder pain. It all begins with a FREE Consultation with our Clinic Director. If it is determined that our Team can help, testing and evaluations are conducted. It is not simply to determine if you have a dislocated shoulder or fracture, it is about understanding what activities – at home, work or while enjoying certain sports, may have contributed to your pain. We need to uncover all factors that may have causes pain and discomfort, so that a customized treatment program can be created and the chance of a recurrence is minimized.
Once testing is completed, the components or structures of the shoulder joint – humerus, scapula, clavicle and soft tissue, can be identified, which cause shoulder pain. In addition, it may be determined that the cause is coming from another area – neck or back – known as referred pain. If necessitated, laboratory blood studies or additional testing – such as an MRI, Nerve Conduction Studies or Electromyography, to rule out any underlying health concerns, may be requested.
Testing may reveal that the patient has:
- Muscle strain
- Joint instability
- Rotator cuff tear or tendonitis
- Bicep tendonitis
- Pinched nerve
- Frozen shoulder
- Dislocated shoulder
Help For Severe Shoulder Pain
Our unique Team approach has helped patients speed recovery. Our Team of Medical Doctors, Physical Therapists, Chiropractors, Acupuncturist and Podiatrist work together to customize a treatment program. Our goals are to decrease inflammation, alleviate pain, increase range-of-motion and muscle strength. Treatment options for shoulder pain include:
- Chiropractic: To correct the source of pain – spinal decompression or traction, therapeutic manipulation, active release, ultrasound, electric stimulation, heat therapy, cryotherapy, topical creams or gels, along with teaching proper posture and providing home exercises are offered.
- Physical Therapy: To decrease pain and rehabilitate the shoulder joint and spine, passive and active therapies are incorporated. In addition to ultrasound, electric stimulation, heat therapy, cryotherapy, topical creams and gels – soft tissue massage, joint mobilization, traction, kinesio taping, exercises (stretching, strengthening and/or low impact), neuromuscular re-education, balance training, fall prevention tips and home exercises are provided. Staying strong and flexible help to prevent a recurrence.
- Acupuncture: This non-drug therapy helps release chemical compounds in the body to reduce inflammation, pain, tension and stress, and improve blood flow and function. By using pre-sterilized, disposable needles at specific points, blockages in the meridian are removed, which help promote the circulation of Qi and blood.
- Podiatry: At times, back pain may be the trigger for shoulder pain. Taking that back one step – back pain may originate in the feet. Luckily, our Podiatrist can evaluate and help correct any imbalances.
It is also vital to give your body proper fuel (nutrition) to perform optimally, along with water to flush away acidic waste products that can contribute to inflammation and pain.
If you are suffering with severe shoulder pain or if your shoulder pain is simply a mild ache… help is available at The AIMS Clinic. Whether you were involved in an accident, an athlete who needs help with proper form, a teacher writing on the blackboard or a secretary on a computer all day, we urge you to come in for a FREE Consultation to determine if treatment is needed. Discover our compassionate care by doctors and therapists dedicated to helping patients regain their health.