Shoulder pain is an extremely common condition that affects people of all ages. The shoulder joint has a wide range of motion which allows us to lift, reach, and throw. However, this mobility comes at a cost – it makes the shoulder prone to injury and degenerative problems. Shoulder pain can range from mild to debilitating, and it may come on suddenly or develop gradually over time. While there are many potential causes, one of the most effective ways to treat shoulder pain is through chiropractic care.
In this article, we will explore how chiropractors approach shoulder pain, the chiropractic techniques they use, and how regular adjustments can help you overcome shoulder pain and restore mobility. Keep reading to learn more.
What Causes Shoulder Pain?
There are numerous structures in the shoulder that can become injured or inflamed and cause pain. Some of the most common culprits include:
- Rotator cuff injuries – The rotator cuff is made up of four muscles and tendons that surround the shoulder joint. Tendinitis, strains, and tears of the rotator cuff muscles are common sources of shoulder pain.
- Bursitis – There are two bursae sacs that provide cushioning in the shoulder. Bursitis occurs when these become inflamed, usually due to repetitive motions.
- Arthritis – Osteoarthritis of the shoulder joint causes degeneration of cartilage and bone spurs that lead to shoulder pain, especially in older adults.
- Frozen shoulder – Also known as adhesive capsulitis, frozen shoulder causes stiffness and loss of motion due to inflammation of the shoulder joint capsule.
- Dislocated shoulder – When the head of the upper arm bone becomes dislodged from the shoulder socket. This causes sudden, severe shoulder pain.
- Fractures – Broken bones in the shoulder region, often caused by traumatic injuries.
- Pinched nerves – Nerves can become compressed, especially by herniated discs in the neck. This can radiate pain into the shoulder.
As you can see, there are diverse causes of shoulder pain. That’s why it’s important to have a chiropractor thoroughly assess your specific condition rather than self-diagnosing. Getting the right diagnosis is key to getting the right treatment.
How Do Chiropractors Treat Shoulder Pain?
Chiropractors take a holistic approach to treating shoulder pain and restoring normal function. Some of the techniques they may use include:
- Chiropractic adjustments – Gentle manual manipulation and mobilization techniques help realign joints and take pressure off compressed nerves. This can reduce inflammation, improve mobility, and relieve pain.
- Soft tissue therapy – Massage, trigger point therapy, myofascial release, and other hands-on techniques loosen up tight muscles and adhesions.
- Rehabilitation exercises – Targeted stretching and strength training exercises help stabilize the shoulder joint and strengthen the surrounding muscles.
- Lifestyle advice – Recommendations on posture, ergonomics, diet, and activity level help manage shoulder pain triggers.
- Modalities – Therapeutic treatments like heat/ice therapy, ultrasound, muscle stimulation, and red light therapy accelerate healing.
- Braces or taping – Bracing and kinesiology tape provide external support and optimize biomechanics.
Rather than just treating the symptomatic pain, chiropractors aim to identify and address the root cause of the problem. This helps prevent pain from reoccurring. For example, poor posture chronically strains the shoulders and overtime can lead to rotator cuff injuries. A chiropractor can identify postural problems and integrate corrective exercises.
The Benefits of Chiropractic for Shoulder Pain
Research shows that chiropractic adjustments and rehabilitation are highly effective at relieving shoulder pain and restoring function. Benefits include:
- Increased range of motion – Adjustments combined with stretching improve mobility of the shoulder joints and surrounding tissues.
- Pain reduction – Studies show significant reductions in shoulder pain intensity and disability after chiropractic care.
- Improved function – Daily activities like reaching overhead or behind the back become less painful and easier.
- Reduced recovery time – Athletes with sports injuries involving the shoulder respond well to chiropractic and return to play faster.
- Non-invasive treatment – Chiropractic provides a drug-free approach without the risks of medications or surgery.
- Addresses root cause – Rather than temporarily alleviating pain, chiropractors address underlying structural problems.
- Holistic wellness – The whole body approach optimizes well-being. Patients find benefits beyond just the shoulder.
Chiropractic care is both safe and effective. It can be used alongside other medical treatments for a comprehensive approach. Since shoulder injuries often recur, ongoing chiropractic maintenance care helps prevent future flare ups.
Give Chiropractic a Try for Your Shoulder Pain
If you are suffering from persistent shoulder pain that is impacting your quality of life, we encourage you to give chiropractic care a try. Chiropractors focus on restoring proper shoulder function rather than just dulling your pain. Treatments are tailored to your specific condition with the goal of helping you get back to full activity.
Be proactive about your health and call today to schedule a consultation. It’s time to take control and overcome your shoulder pain for good.
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